Career Point sees JV, buys powering growth

Career Point sees JV, buys powering growth

Mumbai: Career Point Infosystems is in talks with a South Korean firm for a technology sharing joint venture and is scouting for buys in India to expand its business in the formal and preparatory education space.

India’s education sector, pegged at $86 billion, is rapidly expanding with private players joining, increased government spending and fresh interest from foreigners and large funds who are pumping in money in services, technology and infrastructure.

The Rajasthan-based tutorial services provider plans to finalise the South Korean JV in three months, chief executive Pramod Maheshwari told Reuters.

“It is for developing content with the help of their technology and providing it to Indian students," he said, without divulging any financial details about the JV.

Maheshwari said it is also looking to acquire companies worth up to 400 crore and was in talks with many Indian players.

“Currently we are only focussing on India for growing our business because the market and the potential it offers is huge."

The company, which raised 115 crore via its IPO in October, has cash reserves of 170 crore, generates 30 crore in cash every year and plans to fund the buys via internal accruals.

Expanding formal education

The company which plans to expand its footprint in India’s formal education space said it plans to build universities, schools and vocational training centres in north and western India.

“We have one school in Rajasthan and we plan to open one more in 2012...We also plan to open two universities, one in Rajasthan and one in Himachal Pradesh," Maheshwari said. Both will be ready by December 2012, he said.

The company plans to start by offering courses in science and technology and business studies and then humanities.

It also plans to open two technical institutes in Punjab and Rajasthan

Career Point is also looking at opening one university and 12 vocational centers in Gujarat and is waiting for an approval from the state government, with whom it signed a pact to invest 300 crore in formal education in the state in January.

Career Point has earmarked a total of 120 crore as capital expenditure in FY12, he said.

The company, which operates in the test preparatory space, coaches students for various competitive examinations and has 17 franchisee-owned outlets.

“We are phasing out franchisee-owned centres and are setting up our own. We plan to open three company owned centres in FY12... the investment in each centre will be 0.40 crore."

Shares of the company, which fell as much as 7.22% earlier in the day, pared losses and rose as much as 4.78%. It ended 5.56% down in a Mumbai market that closed 3% down.