GEMS Education Chooses Banks for $5bn London Float

Photo via Vimeo

According to reports, one of the largest private school operators in the world has chosen a barge of heavy-hitting investment banks as it prepares for a $5bn (£3.7bn) London listing in 2018.

Reuters reported that the owners of GEMS Education have chosen Credit Suisse, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch to direct the London initial public offering (IPO).

Headquartered in Dubai, GEMS is owned by Bahraini state investment fund Mumtalakat, local firm Fajr Capital, and US private equity giant Blackstone.

GEMs, which owns five schools in the United Kingdom including Didcot Primary Academy and the Hampshire School Chelsea, said that it had secured a loan to refinance existing borrowings and to support growth amounting to $1.25bn.

GEMS operates globally across six regions with an especially strong presence in the Middle East. In Europe, the firm operated schools in France, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

The company was originally called Global Education Management Systems. It traces its roots back to 1959 when KS and Mariama Varkey, Indian-born teachers, launched a tutoring business in Dubai.

It rapidly expanded in the 1960s, boosted by the increased demand for English-speaking schools to support the education of foreign workers.