Education Corporation of America

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 19, 2001
 

 

VIRGINIA COLLEGE EXPANDS TO INCLUDE MEDICAL CAREERS CENTER, INC. AT PENSACOLA, FLORIDA AND MOBILE, ALABAMA

Education Corporation of America, a platform company of Prospect Partners, LLC., expands reach

CHICAGO, IL.—August 16, 2001: Prospect Partners, LLC and Education Corporation of America (“Virginia College”) are proud to announce the acquisition of Medical Career Center, Inc. at Pensacola, Florida and Medical Career Center, Inc. at Mobile, Alabama. This acquisition is a continuation of Virginia College’s aggressive growth in the Southeast U.S. and Allied Health career training. Virginia College is a platform company of Prospect Partners, LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm.

Virginia College is a leading private, post-secondary, for-profit college in the areas of Information Technology, Allied Health, Interior Design, Culinary Arts, and other technology and business careers offering diplomas, Associates and Bachelor’s degrees. Virginia College locations and schools include: Virginia College at Birmingham, Virginia College at Huntsville, Virginia College at Jackson, Culinard the Culinary Institute of Virginia College, Southern Institute School of Interior Design, Virginia College School of Networking Engineering and now Medical Career Center, Inc. at Pensacola, FL and Medical Career Center, Inc. at Mobile, AL.

Medical Career Center, Inc., is a leading provider of Allied Health career education on the Gulf Coast. The school offers programs in Medical Assisting, Surgical Technology, and Patient Care Technician. The school is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools and has programmatic accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs.

The management team of Virginia College, including the company’s current Chief Executive Office Kenneth C. Horne, Chief Operating Officer James Hutton, and Chief Financial Officer Jim Tolbert came together in April 1999. Over three-year period, the company has expanded from the original two campuses in Birmingham and Huntsville to six campuses in the southeastern region of the United States.

“We are very excited to be expanding our Allied Health offering, as well as to be expanding our growing presence in the southeastern marketplace,” explains CEO Ken Horne. “In a mere three years, we’ve increased our revenues more than one hundred percent through internal growth. We look forward to continuing this path of strong growth and expansion of our curriculum and geographic presence.”

“The Allied Health route is one that is becoming increasingly more attractive as medical assistants and technicians are receiving increasing responsibility and recognition within the medical profession,” says COO Jim Hutton. “Our presence in growing fields such as Allied Health, Information Technology, and Culinary Arts is a positive step forward in securing the long-term vision for our company, which is to provide a solid, diverse network of leading, brand-recognizable post-secondary schools throughout the southeastern United States. Through the Medical Career Centers, we are excited to expand our presence into Pensacola, Florida and Mobile, Alabama—both of which are growing markets with attractive student populations from which to draw.”

“The growth and expansion of the company is steady and strong as we continue to bring key post-secondary careers and geographic markets under the Virginia College umbrella,” adds CFO Jim Tolbert. “We are very excited about the recent expansion into the Allied Health segment, and look forward to working as team to continue our successful track record of internal growth, acquisition, and geographic expansion.”

Medical Career Center, Inc. was founded by Bruce and Marie Capps in 1992. Marie Capps will continue as an executive with Virginia College.

“We are very excited about our institution joining with as high quality an institution as Virginia College” explains retiring CEO Bruce Capps. “We were very particular about combining our institution with another. When you begin something from scratch, as Marie and I did with Medical Career Center, you have extremely high standards.”

“This partnership makes so much sense because both parties bring so much to the table,” adds Marie Capps. “We bring a portfolio of leading Allied Health programs and a strong staff and facility. Virginia College adds additional programs to our mix as well as a top cadre of education executives. I am very excited about working with them. This certainly allows both institutions to take it to the next level.”

“We feel very lucky to have this opportunity with Medical Career Center,” concludes Virginia College CEO Kenneth Horne. “There are not many institutions as strong as Medical Career Center with which we have had the opportunity to partner. Clearly this is an example of one plus one equaling three or even four.”

Together with Prospect Partners, Virginia College will continue to pursue a strategy of internal growth and acquisition by seeking to acquire other post-secondary schools in the southeastern United States.

“The growth and expansion of the company is steady and strong as we continue to bring key post-secondary careers and geographic markets under the Virginia College umbrella,” explains Maneesh K. Chawla of Prospect Partners, LLC. “We are very excited about the recent expansion into the medical career segment, and look forward to working as team to continue our successful track record of internal growth, acquisition, and geographic expansion.”

Prospect Partners, LLC of Chicago manages a $105 million private equity fund focused on management-led leveraged acquisitions and providing growth capital for lower middle market businesses with niche strategies.

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