Bain Capital in talks to buy education software provider PowerSchool source
Bain Capital in talks to buy education software provider PowerSchool source

Bain Capital in talks to buy education-software provider PowerSchool, source says

(Reuters) – Buyout firm Bain Capital is in talks to take education-software provider PowerSchool private, a person familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

The deal, which is still a few weeks away from getting signed, is likely to value PowerSchool somewhere in the $20s per share, according to the source, who requested anonymity as the discussions are confidential.

At that price, a deal would value PowerSchool at roughly $6 billion, including debt, based on Reuters calculations.

Shares of PowerSchool, which has a market capitalization of about $4.1 billion, jumped as much as 27% in early trading on Wednesday morning after the Wall Street Journal reported on the company’s talks with Bain.

A deal for PowerSchool would come at a time when private equity-led buyouts are showing signs of a pickup, following a slowdown last year due to high interest rates that made debt financing for leveraged buyouts more expensive.

Earlier this week, a private equity consortium led by Clearlake Capital and Francisco Partners agreed to acquire the software integrity unit of chip designer Synopsys for $2.1 billion.

PowerSchool, which is headquartered in Folsom, California, provides cloud-based software for K-12 education in North America. It was unofficially started by Greg Porter as a teenager when he developed record-keeping software at his high school in 1983. The school in California paid Porter and his friend $350 for the program.

Fourteen years later, Porter sold the first version of PowerSchool Student Information System. In 2001, it was acquired by Apple, before its ownership changed hands again in 2006 when it was taken over by Pearson.

Private equity firm Vista Equity Partners acquired the company in 2015 and a few years later, buyout firm Onex invested in the company. The two firms still hold significant stakes in PowerSchool, which listed its shares in New York in 2021.

The company now has customers in more than 90 countries and its software is used by more than 50 million students globally, according to its website.

(Reporting by Priyanka G in Bengaluru and Anirban Sen in New York; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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