General Assembly acquired by Swiss HR firm, looks to get bigger - DC


Apr. 17, 2018 7:54 am

General Assembly acquired by Swiss HR firm, looks to get bigger

The $412.5 million deal presents opportunity to expand. It's the latest notable move for a coding bootcamp with a strong D.C. presence

The new second half of General Assembly's D.C. campus.

(Courtesy photo)

Coding academy General Assembly was acquired this week by HR staffing firm The Adecco Group.

Under the deal, which is valued at $412.5 million, General Assembly will maintain its own brand and operations under the umbrella of the Zurich-based company, General Assembly CEO Jake Schwartz wrote in a post about the deal.

General Assembly was founded in 2011 in New York, and operates 20 locations. The company expanded to D.C. in 2013 via partnership with 1776, and is still located at the 15th St. campus offering full- and part-time courses in web development, design, digital marketing and data science.

As Bloomberg notes, General Assembly’s model has been increasingly focused on providing its services for corporations looking to retrain employees, saying it has about 300 of the Fortune 500 as clients. According to a statement, GA had $100 million in revenue for 2017, and is on track to “achieve strong double-digit organic revenue growth.”

In part, the acquisition presents an opportunity to expand that work, offering it alongside Adecco Group offerings to offer training in digital skills and transition employees to new roles. Adecco Group has 100,000 enterprise clients.

“We chose the Adecco Group because it brings a multitude of strategic opportunities to serve enterprise clients, solve pervasive digital skills gaps, and align our offerings with the world-class brands that comprise the Adecco Group network,” Schwartz said in a statement.

For the D.C. campus, early indications are that no immediate changes are imminent. Schwartz wrote that GA’s offerings for students and alumni have the capability to “massively increase” in general across the company as a result of the deal.

The acquisition is just the latest in a series of big moves in the coding school market over the last year. While a pair of high-profile programs shut down, there were also signs of moves to consolidate and expand from New York–based companies. Coworking giant WeWork acquired Flatiron School and expanded to D.C. Meanwhile, online-based program Thinkful sought to expand in D.C., and is looking to grow through a pair of deals to acquire fellow provider Bloc, as well as dev training program/community Viking Code School and the Odin Project.

The GA deal is another sign that while the education needs are clear, the nascent coding school industry continues to adapt on the business side.

Organizations: General Assembly
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