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Struggling Intueri leaving Aust early

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 23/03/2017 Jonathan Underhill

Ailing private training provider Intueri Education Group says it will exit the Australian market on March 29, having failed to convince education authorities to re-register its colleges across the Tasman or renew funding.

The company had hoped to be allowed to run the Australian institutions until the end of the year but the Australian Skills Quality Authority will cancel the registration of its Conwal & Associates and Online Courses Australia (OCA) colleges from March 29.

Separately, Intueri confirmed it has reached a standstill agreement over some $70.7 million of bank debt with ANZ. Last month, the company advised the bank it was in breach of lending covenants and it had 30 days to negotiate the continuation of the facility.

The company said it was very disappointed with the outcome in Australia, given it had a managed exit strategy which it believed would have been in the best interests of students and staff.

The early closure of the Australian colleges had driven up costs associated with those businesses and Intueri revised up its full-year loss to $24.3m from $23.3m.

Intueri has hired High St Capital Partners to drum up interest in the private training establishment company, as a sale proposition either as a whole or in parts.

It said there was no certainty that a bid would materialise.

The company also said it has received the draft Deloitte report from the Tertiary Education Commission's investigation into the educator Quantum. Intueri said it was currently reviewing the report and will provide a response by April 20, as requested.

Quantum was acquired partly via funding from its $60m IPO in 2014 but has been wound down, with some courses transferred to its other colleges. The Serious Fraud Office is also looking into Quantum.

Intueri's shares last traded at 1.4 cents, valuing the company at $1.4m. It went public in 2014, a busy year for initial public offerings, raising $60m at $2.35 a share and valuing Intueri at $235m.

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