China Distance Education Holdings Limited (NYSE: DL) (“CDEL”, or the “Company”), a leading provider of online education and value-added services for professionals and corporate clients in China, today announced that it signed a definitive agreement to acquire an additional 11% equity interest in Beijing Ruida Chengtai Education Technology Co., Ltd. (“Beijing Ruida”), a leading provider of exam preparation services for participants in China’s national judicial examination, for a total consideration of RMB52.8 million ($8.0 million), subject to adjustments under certain pre-agreed conditions, bringing the Company’s total equity interest in Beijing Ruida to 51%. In addition, CDEL maintains the right, at its option, to further increase its equity interest in Beijing Ruida up to 60% before April 2019 under certain pre-agreed conditions. The acquisition of the additional 11% equity interest in Beijing Ruida is an all-cash transaction, and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018.
Mr. Zhengdong Zhu, Chairman and CEO of CDEL, said, “Our investment in Beijing Ruida is ideally aligned with our strategy to build a comprehensive legal education vertical.” Mr. Zhu added, “Beijing Ruida is very well positioned in China’s legal education market due to its highly acclaimed instructors, best-of-breed educational content, and innovative new media marketing strategy. As a result of Beijing Ruida’s outstanding performance in 2017, we have decided to increase our equity stake in Beijing Ruida ahead of April 2019.”
Mr. Xiuyong Zhong, Founder and Chairman of Beijing Ruida, said, “CDEL and Beijing Ruida share the common goal of providing best-of-breed education services to help professionals seeking career advancement. We believe Beijing Ruida’s emphasis on delivering high-quality educational content and services for participants in China’s national judicial examination will further complement CDEL’s comprehensive lifelong learning ecosystem.”
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This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are not historical facts, but instead are predictions about future events. Future events are inherently uncertain, and our forward-looking statements may turn out to be incorrect. The Company may not realize the anticipated benefits of the investment in Beijing Ruida. The forward-looking statements in this press release speak only as of the date on which they are made, and we assume no obligation to update any forward-looking statements except as required by law.