Apollo Buys McGraw-Hill Textbook Unit

Nov 27 2012 | 11:40am ET

McGraw-Hill Cos. yesterday announced that it would sell its educational publishing unit to Apollo Global Management for $2.5 billion.

The deal for the underperforming unit is expected to close later this year or early next year. In addition to McGraw-Hill's textbook business, which includes a digital unit, Apollo will receive other assets.

Apollo will pay McGraw-Hill, which will be renamed McGraw Hill Financial, in cash and debt, including $250 million in Apollo bonds. McGraw-Hill, which owns Standard & Poor's, said it will use the proceeds from the sale, which it estimated at $1.9 billion, to pay for its stock buyback program, pay off debt and make acquisitions.

"With a longstanding track record of investing behind leaders in education, Apollo is pleased to be acquiring a marquee business that has been a pioneer in educational innovation and excellence for over a century," Apollo senior partner Larry Berg said. "McGraw-Hill Education has a deep and impassioned management team, and we share their enthusiasm and strategic vision for the business. We look forward to leveraging the company's leading portfolio of trusted brands and innovative digital learning solutions to drive growth through the ongoing convergence of education and technology on a global basis."

McGraw-Hill has been under pressure to split for years; one of its most strident critics has been Jana Partners, which wants the company cut into four parts, rather than two.

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