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Tree House acquiring national pre-school chain Brainworks

Pre-school management company Tree House Education & Accessories Ltd has entered into a term sheet to acquire 100 per cent equity of Brainworks Learning Systems Pvt Ltd for an undisclosed amount, according to a company disclosure.

Brainworks, a national chain of pre-schools, was founded in 2008 and the company has been following a franchise model for its expansion.

Privately held Brainworks is part of Better Value Brands Pvt Ltd, which comprises group firms running companies and brands such as Talwalkars, Popular Prakashan, Better Value Restaurants, Lateral Heights and Naturals Ice Cream under its banner. The company is a joint venture between Vinayak Gawande, Anant Gawande, Harsha Bhatkal and Amit Mehendele. Lina Ashar’s Kangaroo Kids Education Ltd is the curriculum provider.

Last December, Tree House Education raised a little over Rs 41 crore ($7.6 million) from Aditya Birla Capital Advisors, the private equity arm of Aditya Birla Financial Services Group, and existing investor Omidyar Network. It also counts Ronnie Screwvala’s Unilazer Ventures as an investor.

Tree House is a six-year-old firm founded by the husband-wife duo of Rajesh and Geeta Bhatia. It started operations in 2007 and raised the first round of funding from Matrix Partners. It also raised around Rs 112 crore in its public issue around two years ago.

This is not the first step by Tree House towards inorganic growth. Last year, it acquired the pre-school business of MT Educare, a Mumbai-based K-12 tutoring and test preparation firm, for an undisclosed amount. The deal gave it six company-operated centres located in Mumbai and Pune.

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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