New York, January 6, 2016 — Little Sprouts Holdings LLC (“Little Sprouts”), a leading provider of early child care and education services in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, today announced that New York-based investment firm, The Wicks Group of Companies (“Wicks”), entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a majority position in the company, alongside management. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Headquartered in Lawrence, MA, Little Sprouts serves more than 1,700 children in 22 schools. The Company has been a trusted innovator in early education and a network of award-winning child care facilities for over 30 years. Little Sprouts offers a proprietary curriculum called “Budding Scholars” and an individualized learning approach to pre-K children, which inspires a lifelong love of learning and develops a strong foundation for early reading proficiency. Each child’s education is individualized through regular assessment and monthly progress checks and 93% of Little Sprouts’ graduates are early-reading proficient.
Commenting on the transaction, Little Sprouts President & CEO, Mark Anderegg, said, “We are very pleased to welcome Wicks as our new partner to provide the capital and investment experience to help Little Sprouts achieve its full potential. We are excited to have found a partner that shares our vision and appreciation for the culture, people, and curriculum that we have built. We believe that the growth opportunities in our markets are significant and we look forward to working with Wicks to continue building our track record of excellence and expanding into new markets.”
“Little Sprouts is a leader in the rapidly expanding early education services market and has done an excellent job growing its business through new and existing centers,” said Daniel L. Black, Managing Partner at Wicks. “We believe the breadth of opportunity for organic and acquisition-driven growth is compelling and we look forward to working with Mark and the Little Sprouts team to support the next phase of the company’s development. We believe strongly that there is a positive growth trend in early childhood education across the country.”
The transaction closed on December 23, 2015. Goodwin Procter LLP served as legal counsel to Little Sprouts. Signal Hill LLC served as strategic advisor to Little Sprouts. DLA Piper LLP served as legal counsel to Wicks.
ABOUT LITTLE SPROUTS (http://www.littlesprouts.com) Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Lawrence, MA, Little Sprouts provides early education and child care to more than 1,700 children per year in 22 centers in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Little Sprouts’ award-winning schools offer parents a literacy-based, individualized, developmentally-appropriate education for each child, based on the Company’s proprietary “Budding Scholars” curriculum.
Contact: Mark Anderegg, President & CEO, 781-451-0107
ABOUT THE WICKS GROUP OF COMPANIES (www.wicksgroup.com) The Wicks Group of Companies is a private equity firm based in New York City that invests in lower-middle-market companies operating in selected segments of the information, education and media industries principally in the United States and Canada. Since its founding in 1989, Wicks has invested over $1 billion of capital in 30 platform companies and approximately 100 add-on acquisitions. The firm has applied a consistent investment strategy since its founding, partnering with high-quality, experienced management teams to build businesses organically and through acquisitions.