Thursday, November 27, 2008

Carlyle Group Invests in Recession Proof Chinese Private Education

The Carlyle Group invested $50 million in Hao Yue Education Group, a Chinese for-profit educator. Reuters reported:

The Washington, D.C.-based private equity giant said the investment was funded by the Carlyle Asia Growth Partners Group and would support Beijing-based Hao Yue's plan to boost enrolment through campus expansion and acquisitions of other private vocational schools.

The deal comes after Carlyle, which had $91.5 billion of assets under management committed to 66 funds at the end of September, last year invested $20 million in Topia Education, which runs tutoring institutes in South Korea.

Private equity firms are increasingly investing in the fast-growing private learning sector, betting that the obsession of many Asian parents with their children's education will make it recession-proof.

Will they teach students about producing quality goods and services? America's innovative financial products and Chinese infant formula proved toxic. It's unclear how either market will recover from such poor quality production.

Let's hope Carlyle does better with for-profit education than they did with Carlyle Capital, Blue Wave Partners, SemGroup, and patients in their New Orleans LifeCare Hospital after Hurricane Katrina struck.