Cialfo sells consultancy arm to focus on connecting universities and students online
Cialfo, a Singaporean startup that has developed a platform for managing school and college admissions, is selling its consulting business to ChangedEdu.
The terms of the deal announced today are not disclosed but the transaction is all in cash, according to Cialfo co-founder and CEO, Rohan Pasari.
Singapore-based ChangedEdu, a platform operator that specializes in mergers and acquisitions in the education space, will merge the business arm into its portfolio brand CollegeWise, which helps guide prospective students to colleges in the US. CollegeWise’s mission and modus operandi are similar to Cialfo’s offline guidance arm, and the deal opens up the US-based service to Singapore students exploring opportunities in US institutes.
ChangedEdu recently announced plans to invest between US$300 million and US$500 million in education-related companies.
Cialfo’s admissions consulting team will go over to CollegeWise. “It brings a lot of pride for our homegrown team to catch the attention of America’s largest college admissions brand, and to now be a part of the Collegewise family,” Pasari tells Tech in Asia.
Cialfo will retain about half its 20-strong team and press on with its software-as-a-service offering, which helps university admissions and counselors manage student applications. It launched this business-facing service in 2016 and currently works with more than 100 clients, with over 10,000 users signed up.
It operates in Southeast Asia, the US, China, and India, where it has partners like Houston-based firm Brightfutures, Indian admissions counselors Red Pen and The Edge, and schools like the Mayo College and the Global Indian International School in Singapore.
“Cialfo has increasingly been focusing on its technology platform,” Pasari says. “We are better positioned to continue to build [it] and scale the operations in key regions – India, China, [and the] US.”
Pasari also hopes the deal with Collegewise will bring “thousands” of potential students to its online service.
Dealing in education
Cialfo was founded in 2012 by Pasari and Stanley Chia, starting out with offline counseling to help Singaporean students find and enroll in US colleges of their choice. The startup raised an undisclosed amount of funding from investors Koh Boon Hwee and Anand Govindaluri in August 2016.
ChangedEdu recently announced plans to invest between US$300 million and US$500 million in education-related companies in the next three to four years, according to The Straits Times. Its last acquisition in Singapore was private schools chain Lorna Winston Schools.
“Asia’s education industry is by far the fastest-growing globally, driven by surging demand from parents, students, and institutions towards a high-quality international education,” said ChangedEdu founder and CEO Brian Rogove in a statement.
“While we will wholly absorb the Cialfo consulting team, we also plan to leverage their tech platform to help thousands of students find the dream college of their choice,” he added.
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