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Ayala, Yuchengco complete merger of education units

/ 01:18 PM May 03, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Yuchengco and Ayala groups have completed the P15.5-billion merger of their education businesses, bringing together seven education institutions with a sum of 60,000 students under one roof.

The surviving entity is public-listed iPeople Inc., which is 51.3-percent owned by the Yuchengcos’ House of Investments (HI) while conglomerate Ayala Corp. (AC) owns the remaining 33.5 percent.

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The merger – which creates one of the leading education groups in the country – has received all necessary board, stockholder and regulatory approvals, and is effective as of May 2, the two groups said in a joint statement.

The merger includes: Malayan Education System Inc., operator of Mapua University, one of the country’s leading engineering and technical universities; Malayan Colleges Laguna, touted as the best board exam performing private school in Calabarzon, Malayan Colleges Mindanao (A Mapua School) in Davao; and, Malayan High School of Science in Manila.  These were all under the control of the Yuchengcos through iPeople.

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For its part, the Ayala group brought in AC Education’s subsidiaries: the University of Nueva Caceres, one of the oldest and largest universities in Bicol; National Teachers College, the country’s pioneer private teachers’ training tertiary education institution; and, APEC Schools, the largest chain of private stand-alone high schools in the country.

“We are delighted to complete this merger and are looking forward to building on Mapua’s expertise as one of the top STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) schools in the country, and AC Education’s track record in delivering affordable career-focused courses in partnership with industry,” said Helen Dee, who chairs House of Investments Inc. and the Yuchengco group of companies.

“HI and AC both believe that quality education is critical to accelerating the progress of our country and believe that this merger will enable us to together step up our participation in this very important sector,” she added.

Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, AC chair and chief executive officer, also expressed optimism on the partnership with the Yuchengcos.

“We are also excited about the many potential synergies that will allow us to better provide our students with the technical, critical thinking and real-world problem-solving skills they need to be successful in our rapidly changing 21st century job market. Collectively, we can leverage our combined strengths in STEM, outcomes-based education, distance learning and cost effective EdTech, and our students and alumni can benefit from career opportunities catalyzed by our schools’ talent development partnerships with the Yuchengco group of companies, the Ayala group of companies and other leading industry groups,” Zobel said.

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