Houlihan Lokey Advises Sovereign Capital Partners

Houlihan Lokey is pleased to announce that it advised Sovereign Capital Partners (Sovereign) on the sale of BIMM Institute (BIMM) to funds managed by ICG plc, a global alternative asset manager. The transaction closed on 20 November 2020.

BIMM is the largest and leading provider of creative arts education in Europe with 12 colleges across Europe—including London, Brighton, Bristol, Dublin, Birmingham, Manchester, Berlin, and Hamburg—and more than 8,200 students. The company offers higher education degrees and further education courses in the areas of modern music, performing arts, and filmmaking. The high quality and relevance of BIMM’s specialist vocational education offering is reflected in the continued increase in student enrolments, its 86% graduate employment rate in creative arts, and being granted taught degree awarding powers (TDAP) in the UK, by order of the Privy Council in March 2019, thus further enhancing the group’s attraction to students. Alumni include Ella Mai, George Ezra, Mercy Sotire, and James Bay, and Roger Daltrey is BIMM’s patron.

Sovereign is a UK middle-market private equity investor delivering strategic investments to companies with a differentiated market position and potential for expansion in the UK or internationally, principally in the service-based sectors. The firm deploys a strategy of buy-and-build to help create value and has partnered with over 50 businesses to deliver more than 250 follow-on transactions.

Houlihan Lokey served as the exclusive financial advisor to Sovereign on its sale of BIMM. This transaction builds on Houlihan Lokey’s market-leading position in the training and education sector. Other recent transactions in the sector include acting for itslearning on its sale to Sanoma Group; Skillsoft on its Chapter 11 restructuring and subsequent sale to Churchill Capital Corp. II; Judicium Education on its sale to Supporting Education Group; Oakley Capital on the acquisition of Seagull; AIR Assessment, the student assessment division of the American Institutes for Research, on its sale to Cambium Learning Group, Inc.; Cambridge University on its acquisition of Durham University’s Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring; Kallidus on its sale to Apse Capital; Inflexion on its acquisitions of Times Higher Education and Calco; Atlas Knowledge on its sale to Mintra Group; and Primary Capital on its acquisition of ICS Learn.

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