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Why higher ed mergers and acquisitions have slowed – UB

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Merger and acquisition activity has declined by 37% through September

Trade schools and institutions with nursing and computer science programs were attractive to investors this year though COVID and the election have slowed merger and acquisition activity in higher ed, a report said.

While merger and acquisition activity has declined by 37% through September, compared to 2019, the 27 transactions were driven by schools seeking “defensive synergies to stabilize finances amid COVID-19 impacts,” according to Capstone Headwaters’ Post-Secondary Education October Update.

Higher ed could see near-term growth as enrollment tends to climb during periods of high unemployment, the report said.

Nursing appears to be one of the prime areas of potential growth. Approximately 500,000 registered nurses are expected to retire within the next two years, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that 1.1 million new nurses are needed to meet demand, the report said.

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