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24 Ore Business School

24 Ore Business School

December 2017


Milan, Italy


Provision of vocational masters programmes

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Business at time of investment

24 Ore Business School was a leading player in the tertiary education segment in Italy, providing professionally-oriented education and training.  Established in 1991 as a business unit of Il Sole 24 ORE, the school had two headquarters in Milan and Rome and enrolled more than 26,000 students a year onto its courses both in classrooms and online. The Company differentiates itself by creating targeted courses focused on the real needs of business and employs highly experienced industry professionals to originate original content and deliver lessons.  Most courses incorporate an internship for the students, which presents a highly successful pathway to employment.

Investment rationale

Palamon’s investment stems from its ongoing thematic work in the education sector to identify businesses that benefit from a structural shift towards private education.  Palamon previously invested in Cambridge Education Group, a pathway provider for foreign students to access western universities.  Palamon believes that 24 Ore Business School is ideally positioned to address the significant need for specialised vocational training among the Italian youth where unemployment in some regions stands at more than 30%.

Value creation

  • Appointed strong executive team: Recruited high calibre executives; CEO Maurizio Santacroce, formerly General Manager at Sisal Group, and CFO Corrado Rocchetti, former CFO of Cobra Telematics
  • Reinforced industry relationships and board: Recruited Chairman Giorgio Fossa, formerly chairman of Confindustria, Fondimpresa, SEA and LUISS University.
  • Executed carve-out: Completed the carve-out from parent company, Il Sole 24 Ore, and created a clear growth plan, with the reinforced team in place to execute it.
  • Acquired whole company: Completed the acquisition of the remaining 49% of shares in 2019