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Thursday, May 26, 2005

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Aspire Learning buys 60 pc stake in Scholars' League

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Mr K. Swaminathan, Director, Aspire Learning Company Pvt Ltd (right), and Mr Neelesh Asati, CEO, Scholars' League India Pvt Ltd, at a press conference in Chennai on Wednesday. — Bijoy Ghosh

Chennai , May 25

THE Rs 15-crore Aspire Learning Company Pvt Ltd has acquired 60 per cent equity in Scholars' League India Pvt Ltd.

In the next 18 months, Aspire-Scholars' League will set up 50 more centres in South, with 200 students across various programmes at each centre.

Mr K. Swaminathan, Director, Aspire Learning, while not disclosing the value of the acquisition, said that with this step, the company was moving up the value chain and will be catering to a new segment - the undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Scholars' League, he said, would gain expertise in scaling up and managing franchise operations.

Mr Neelesh Asati, CEO, Scholars' League, said that the company caters to training students for the common admission test (CAT) exams for business schools. The company,started in 2002, has four centres in Karnataka and five in Tamil Nadu.

Scholars' League registered a turnover of Rs 60 lakh for the year ended March 2005. The company is targeting a turnover of Rs 4.2 crore next fiscal, he said.

The company's training modules would now be available at over 30 centres across the South by March 2006. The student base is expected to grow from 1,000 to 7,000, he said.

The company will also be offering new products such as training for the civil services exams as well as Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and Graduate Management Admission Test, he said.

Mr Asati said that the CAT training market is booming and estimated to be Rs 160 crore.

The GRE entrance training is estimated at Rs 80 crore.

Aspire Learning is a three-year old company training students for the various professional college entrance exams such as the joint entrance exam for the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) IIT-JEE and the Tamil Nadu Professional Colleges Entrance Examination among others.

Mr Swaminathan said this market is estimated to be in the region of about Rs 3,000 crore.

He said that Aspire has 42 centres in South India and caters to over 30,000 students from Class 9 to 12.

Aspire also has a programme called Superkidz for kindergarten to Class 8 children.

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