Online Solutions Help Fill the Void as Social Distancing Affects Education

Online Solutions Help Fill the Void as Social Distancing Affects Education

- News Commentary

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2020

NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- As the pandemic continues to put a strain on the worldwide economy, one side effect is the sharp increase in online streaming content consumption. There is still uncertainty ahead, and it is unclear just how soon society will get back to how things were before the pandemic. And, while online education was considered a fast-growing market even before the pandemic, now online learning has become a crucial component of daily lives for millions of students. Even top tier universities are included in the shift to online education, with some providing full curriculums. Outside the university arena, there are also numerous services such as Skillshare, Lynda, Udemy, Coursera and Udacity that provide courses separately, or other specific online education formats. Overall, the global online education market is projected to witness a CAGR of 9.23% during the forecast period to reach a total market size of USD 319.167 Billion in 2025 while increasing from USD 187.877 Billion in 2019, according to data by Research and Markets. Meten EdtechX Education Group Ltd. (NASDAQ: METX), New

Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc. (NYSE: EDU), Chegg, Inc. (NYSE: CHGG), Perdoceo Education Corporation (NASDAQ: PRDO), K12 Inc. (NYSE: LRN)

The popularity of online education services, as well as online curriculums by universities, is growing rapidly in emerging markets. A large part of the growth is due to growing internet penetration coupled with mounting use of mobile devices in emerging economies such as China, India, Malaysia and South Korea. North America held the largest market share of global online education market in 2017, but this is expected to change as the APAC (Asia-Pacific) region is projected to witness the fastest regional market growth during the forecast period. As a result, earlier last month, Chinese technology company Tencent Holdings Ltd. became a lead investor in a funding round that valued the online education startup Udemy Inc. at more than USD 3 Billion, according to a report by Bloomberg.

Meten EdtechX Education Group Ltd. (NASDAQ: METX) just announced breaking news this morning that, "a leading omnichannel English language training ("ELT") service provider in China, today announced that it expects to increase prices of its products under the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic this year.

As a key player in the Chinese ELT market, Meten EdtechX has further strengthened its pricing power. The Company intends to increase the prices of its products by approximately 5%. This move is expected to increase the Company's gross billings by approximately RMB80 million, net profit by approximately RMB60 million, and earnings per share by 50% in 2021. The net profit of Meten EdtechX will likely rapidly increase after hitting bottom during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

In addition, Meten EdtechX is building more high-end SVIP courses for China's high-net-worth students/users. The price of the new SVIP courses is expected to be approximately RMB200,000 per student per year. Meten EdtechX will provide students/users with door-to-door teaching classes and a three-for-one attentive teaching services. The new SVIP courses will be offered in more than 20 cities across China to extend the Company's high-end business.

As of September 30, 2020, Meten EdtechX had 123 learning centers (including 110 self-operated learning centers and 13 franchised learning centers). The Company believes that Meten EdtechX has become the only choice for adults in most cities in China to learn English offline. Based on this competitive advantage, Meten EdtechX has also continued to accelerate the development of junior and online ELT businesses to build a comprehensive education and training platforms.

About Meten EdtechX

Meten EdtechX is a leading ELT service provider in China, delivering English language and future skills training for Chinese students and professionals. Through a sophisticated digital platform and nationwide network of learning centers, the Company provides its services under three industry-leading brands: Meten (adult and junior ELT services), ABC (primarily junior ELT services) and Likeshuo (online ELT). It offers superior teaching quality and student satisfaction, which are underpinned by cutting edge technology deployed across its business, including AI-driven centralized teaching and management systems that record and analyze learning processes in real time.

The Company is committed to improving the overall English language competence and competitiveness of the Chinese population to keep abreast of the rapid development of globalization. Its experienced management is focused on further developing its digital platform and expanding its network of learning centers to deliver a continually evolving service offerings to a growing number of students across China.

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New Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc. (NYSE: EDU) provider of private educational services in China based on the number of program offerings, total student enrollments and geographic presence. New Oriental offers a wide range of educational programs, services and products consisting primarily of language training and test preparation, primary and secondary school education, online education, content development and distribution, overseas study consulting services, pre-school education and study tour. The company offers test preparation courses to students taking language and entrance exams used by educational institutions in the United States, the People's Republic of China, and the Commonwealth countries; and after-school tutoring courses for middle and high school students to achieve better scores on entrance exams for admission into high schools or higher education institutions, as well as for children to teach English.

Chegg, Inc. (NYSE: CHGG) announced last year that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Thinkful, an online learning platform that offers professional courses directly to students across America. 85% of Thinkful graduates get jobs in their field of study within six months of graduating their program. "With the anticipated addition of Thinkful to our platform, Chegg will continue to expand our offerings and make it easier for students to accelerate their path from learning to earning," said Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Chegg. "Students are increasingly looking to improve their professional opportunities by learning the most relevant job skills, either while in school or soon after. Adding Thinkful courses to our suite of Chegg Learning Services will enable us to empower students to obtain in-demand, high-quality job skills, for the fastest-growing job categories, with affordable prices. Thinkful has achieved strong revenue growth of greater than 30% year-over-year because it has focused on going directly to students and helping them gain the most valuable skills for today's workforce."

Perdoceo Education Corporation (NASDAQ: PRDO) academic institutions offer postsecondary education primarily online to a diverse student population, along with campus-based and blended learning programs. Last month the company announced financial results for the quarter and year to date ended September 30, 2020. Total student enrollments at September 30, 2020 increased 17.2 percent. CTU's total student enrollments increased 4.8 percent while AIU's total student enrollments increased 37.7 percent. "The year to date results underscore our commitment to student experiences, retention and academic outcomes and I'm proud of the entire Perdoceo team for their efforts to educate, serve and support our students," said Todd Nelson, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Investments in data analytics and technology across our academic platforms have enhanced student learning and strengthened the efficiency and effectiveness of our student support processes. Our financial position continues to strengthen and we remain focused on executing against our objective of sustainable and responsible growth."

K12 Inc. (NYSE: LRN) announced in July that online private school is now more accessible for the 2020-2021 school year as K12 Private Academy offers families a 10% discount on tuition. The reduced tuition will open the door for more families to have a safe and secure school year by accessing quality education from licensed teachers from the comfort of their homes, or anywhere in the world with an internet connection. "We are excited to continue our mission of providing a quality, online private school education for more families in the upcoming school year," said Head of School Leslie Smith. "K12 Private Academy is committed to opening the doors to families seeking an alternative learning environment and ensuring that every student has access to a school that helps them succeed."

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