Ed Tech Industry

Discovery Selling Majority Stake in Discovery Education

Discovery Communications announced that it's letting go of a majority ownership stake in its K–12 education subsidiary, Discovery Education, whose ed tech portfolio ranges from textbooks to educational multimedia to a major educator network. A private equity firm is picking up a controlling interest in Discovery Education for $120 million.

According to the company, Discovery Education's products are in use in half the classrooms in the United States.

The purchaser is Francisco Partners, an equity firm specializing in technology companies. Some of its past investments that have crossed over into K–12 education have included security and communications companies Barracuda and SonicWall and reading software company myON.

"With this additional investment, Discovery Education will continue its laser-like focus on creating and delivering the innovative services today's educators need to prepare students for success beyond the classroom," added Scott Kinney, President K-12 Education, Discovery Education. "In the short term, our partners will see no change in their relationship with Discovery Education. However, long term, this new relationship tremendously enhances our ability to create the next generation of digital services and initiatives for educators worldwide."

The purchase is expected to close in the first half of this year. Discovery Education's current management team "will operate the company as a standalone business upon the closing of the transaction," according to the company.

About the Author

David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 25-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).


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