Harris Williams Advises OnCourse Learning on its Sale to Bertelsmann Education Group

November 1, 2018

Harris Williams, a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide for more than 25 years, announces the sale of OnCourse Learning (OnCourse), a portfolio company of CIP Capital (CIP), to Bertelsmann Education Group, a division of international media, services and education company Bertelsmann SE & Co KGaA. OnCourse is a leading provider of talent management, e-learning, and governance, risk and compliance solutions for highly regulated industries. As part of the transaction, OnCourse’s professional education segment will become a new entity within Bertelsmann Education Group while OnCourse’s healthcare segment will merge with Relias, a healthcare-focused e-learning, assessment and performance metrics business within the Bertelsmann Education Group portfolio.  The transaction was led by Mike Wilkins, Sam Hendler, Andy Leed, John Mathias and Rebecca Evans of Harris Williams’ Technology, Media & Telecom (TMT) Group.  

“With the support of CIP, Patrick Sheahan and the OnCourse team have built a compelling, multi-vertical platform, bringing together best-in-class educational content with leading technology that enhances the digital learning experience and better equips businesses to navigate through increasingly complex regulatory environments,” said Mike Wilkins, a managing director at Harris Williams. “We continue to see strong momentum in the broader education / training technology sector, and OnCourse represents the firm’s ninth closed transaction in the sector in the past 24 months.”

“With OnCourse’s healthcare segment merging with Relias and the professional education segment becoming a standalone entity within Bertelsmann Education Group, each business is well-positioned to usher in new chapters of growth,” added Andy Leed, a vice president at Harris Williams. “This transaction is an excellent example of Harris Williams’ ability and expertise in successfully executing complex, global transactions on behalf of our clients.”

OnCourse delivers licensure, regulatory and compliance education solutions throughout the nation’s leading industries including financial services, healthcare and real estate. Through trusted industry expertise, compliance management and technology solutions, OnCourse focuses on advancing the e-learning environment for individuals and businesses to help to build new careers, empower employees through knowledge and identify efficiencies in corporate training management. OnCourse offers a full suite of educational products including state and federally approved prelicensing and continuing education programs, accredited course content, exam prep tools, publications, e-books, events and a sophisticated and customizable learning management system and course-authoring tool. OnCourse is headquartered in Brookfield, Wisconsin with additional offices throughout the U.S.

CIP is a private equity firm focused on investing in growth-oriented, middle market companies across the business information and technology-enabled services sectors in North America. The fund seeks to invest in proven, profitable businesses that provide their customer bases with critical information, data-driven insights and value-added outsourced services. Founded in 2010, CIP is based in New York City.

The Bertelsmann Education Group encompasses Bertelsmann's education business. The group is shaping professional learning in the 21st century with digital education and services offerings focused on career-related training in selected industries. OnCourse joins the Bertelsmann Education Group’s family of leading digital education and services companies, including Relias, Udacity and Hot Chalk.

For more than 8,000 healthcare organizations and 3 million caregivers, Relias continues to help clients deliver better clinical and financial outcomes by reducing variation in care. Their platform employs performance metrics and assessments to reveal specific gaps in skills and addresses them with targeted, personalized and engaging learning.

Harris Williams (www.harriswilliams.com), a subsidiary of the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE:PNC), is a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide. The firm has deep industry knowledge, global transaction expertise and an unwavering commitment to excellence. Harris Williams provides sell-side and acquisition advisory, restructuring advisory, board advisory, private placements and capital markets advisory services.

Harris Williams’ TMT Group advises leading private and public companies, entrepreneurs, private equity firms and venture capital firms on mergers and acquisitions and capital-raising transactions worldwide. The TMT Group has deep domain expertise in the Software/SaaS and Internet & Digital Media segments, with particular emphasis on specific verticals including education technology, data analytics, energy technology, fintech, public sector, and supply chain/logistics—with a dedicated healthcare technology (HCIT) practice. Across verticals, the firm also advises technology services and networking solutions businesses. For more information on the TMT Group and its recent transactions, visit the TMT Group’s section of the Harris Williams website.

Investment banking services are provided by Harris Williams LLC, a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC, and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd, which is a private limited company incorporated under English law with its registered office at 5th Floor, 6 St. Andrew Street, London EC4A 3AE, UK, registered with the Registrar of Companies for England and Wales (registration number 07078852). Harris Williams & Co. Ltd is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Harris Williams is a trade name under which Harris Williams LLC and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd conduct business.