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CIBT Group acquires Linkman International

Canadian-based CIBT Education Group has entered the youth English language market in China, after buying a 95% stake in Linkman International Language Institute. Linkman specialises in children’s English programmes, operating two campuses in the province of Zhejiang.

In addition to youth English training, CIBT will pursue new ventures in TESOL and pathways in China

It will be rebranded as KGIC (King George International College) Linkman English school and serve as the base for CIBT’s expansion in this market. The move is a change of direction for the company, which has previously focused on adult professional training and language learning in Asia and North America.

“The English training market for younger students in China has shown phenomenal growth”

“The English training market for younger students in China has shown phenomenal growth over the past few years, which is expected to continue,” said Toby Chu, vice chairman, president and CEO of CIBT. “CIBT Group is planning to expand the services it offers to this market and the acquisition of Linkman is the first step in this strategy that we plan to complete in 2013.”

A letter of intent has been entered and the acquisition is expected to close within eight weeks, subject to due diligence.

In addition to English for students grade 1-12, the revised strategy will see CIBT pursue new ventures in TESOL programmes for English teacher certifications; and pathway programmes leading to North American colleges and universities.

CIBT Group owns and operates a global network of professional training and language colleges. It acquired KGIC, one of Canada’s largest English language schools, in 2009, to help applicants to CIBT degree and diploma programmes improve their English.

Classes at the school are also broadcast, via video technology, to recipient classrooms in China using the company’s Global Learning Network.

Speaking with The PIE News last year, Chu said the company was committed to bringing western education to China. “Our emphasis is on quality and delivering western education using western teachers,” he said.

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