Misner sells SAE operations

In a $289 million deal, Tom Misner has sold his worldwide SAE operations, including his Byron Bay headquarters, to Australian-based global education provider, Navitas.

SAE will operate as a stand-alone division within the Navitas group, with Mr Misner appointed president of global operations.

Mr Misner said the acquisition by Navitas represented the next phase in SAE’s ongoing growth.

“We expect the partnership to deliver new and exciting education opportunities for the students and management,” Mr Misner said.

Founded in Australia in 1976, SAE has 47 campuses in 19 countries including Germany, the US, UK, South Africa, Dubai and Singapore.

It has about 8000 students worldwide studying audio production, film production and interactive media.

In the 2010 calendar year, SAE is expected to have a turnover of $109 million, delivering a $33 million profit.

Combined, Navitas and SAE will have more than 50,000 students enrolled across 97 campuses around the world.

Navitas CEO Rod Jones said SAE had built a global reputation over three years as a high-quality provider of creative and new media education.

Mr Jones said SAE was well-positioned to take advantage of the increasing global demand for skills-based training in these areas.

“With its focus on domestic students, SAE provides Navitas with diversification of our student profile and earnings base, as well as providing us with an opportunity to leverage our international student recruitment expertise to grow SAE,” he said.

“Education and skills training is a business we excel in and we are confident that we can add value to SAE within the Navitas group.”

Navitas says the deal is still subject to certain conditions, including approvals from regulatory authorities in key countries.

If there are no problems, the acquisition will be finalised by the end of January.

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