Busy Bees announces acquisition in New Zealand, completes Think Childcare deal
The Sector > Provider > Corporate activity > Busy Bees announces acquisition in New Zealand, completes Think Childcare deal

Busy Bees announces acquisition in New Zealand, completes Think Childcare deal

by Jason Roberts

October 22, 2021

Early childhood education and care (ECEC) provider Busy Bees Early Learning Australia (Busy Bees) has announced its first acquisition in New Zealand with the purchase of Provincial Education Group in a deal that is expected to close at the end of October. 


Provincial Education is New Zealand’s third largest ECEC provider and currently operates 75 centres across the country’s North and South Island in a deal that will see current management transition across to Busy Bees. 


“Our global mission is to give children the best start in life,” Busy Bees Australia and New Zealand CEO, Robert Hughes said. “It is a great step to welcome Provincial Education into the Busy Bees family as our first expansion into New Zealand.” 


“It is clear we have a shared commitment with the Provincial Education management team to providing the highest quality care and education, and a strong alignment around values.”


Provincial Education Chief Executive Officer Leanne Mortlock added, “With Provincial Education now joining the Busy Bees Group, I can’t think of a better organisation with a global reputation for integrity, values and standards to be aligning ourselves with.” 


“I am looking forward to working with Robert to continue to drive our growth and success.”


Completion of Think Childcare purchase also confirmed by Busy Bees


In addition, Busy Bees also confirmed the completion of the acquisition of the Think Childcare Group marking the end of execution of an extensive implementation agreement that was initially signed in June 2021. 


Completion of the deal will see Busy Bees’ Australian network increase to 147 centres across Australia. 


“Think Childcare is a high-quality business and offers Busy Bees a compelling opportunity and platform for growth, while continuing to strengthen our global portfolio and bring further talent into the Busy Bees business,” Mr Hughes said. 


“We are delighted to welcome the families, the staff and most of all the children into the Busy Bees family.”


Busy Bees combined network reaches 222 centres across Australia and NZ


Having acquired Foundation Early Learning Limited in June 2018, global ECEC provider Busy Bees Group has steadily grown its Australian operations via both brownfield acquisition and greenfield expansion which now, when combined with the acquisition of Provincial Financial, stands at 222 centres. 


“Since Busy Bees entered this region back in 2018 we have continued to invest in our footprint through new centre openings and acquisitions across Australia and now New Zealand,” Mr Hughes said. 


“We have a clear ambition of continued growth underpinned by the financial strength of the Busy Bees Group. The Provincial Education and Think Childcare acquisitions allow Busy Bees to support more children, families and staff than ever before.”


Busy Bees Group Chief Executive Simon Irons added, “’Busy Bees entered the region with an objective to become one of the top early years education providers in Australia focused on community based centres.”


“We continue to back a strong local management team, led by regional CEO Robert Hughes, and I am delighted that with the acquisitions of Provincial Education and Think Childcare we take a significant step forward towards realising this ambition.”


To learn more about Busy Bees Australia click here and Provincial Education here

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