Flywire | July 14, 2022
Today, Flywire Corporation , a global payments enablement and software company, announced that it has completed the acquisition of Cohort Go, an international education payments provider that brings additional students, agents and essential student services to Flywire. The acquisition will build on Flywire’s existing education business to accelerate the growth of its agent focus and team, deepen its commitment to product and payment innovation, and further invest in Asia-Pacific (APAC), a key geographic focus for Flywire.
Cohort Go’s core focus is on providing international students with the ability to make cross-border tuition payments through international agents. Cohort Go’s agent platform is expected to bolster Flywire’s existing agent solutions to deliver even greater value to educational institutions, agents, and students. Additionally, with partner relationships in almost 40 geographies, Cohort Go’s global footprint and penetration in APAC and Latin America also present new growth and expansion opportunities for Flywire.
“Recruiting agencies play a critical role in the international student journey by assisting students in finding placements in higher educational and other institutions. “Cohort Go has been prominent in this space, with a network of over 1,000 agent partnerships, including some of the most prestigious student recruitment agencies in the world.”
Mike Massaro, CEO of Flywire
Massaro continued: “As we continue to invest in our Flywire Advantage – the combination of our next-gen payments platform, proprietary global payment network and industry-specific software – we seek opportunities to embed deeper into the workflows of our clients, agents and payers, with the goal of driving more value for them. Cohort Go’s successful agent platform, global footprint and adjacent services complement our existing capabilities and will help us power the higher education ecosystem into the future.”
Growth in international student recruitment indicates strong secular trend
Recent research suggests that the international education industry is poised for significant growth. According to new data from the market intelligence firm HolonIQ, 8 million international students will be enrolled with foreign higher education institutions by 2030 – 3 million more than were abroad in 2019 – and that their total spending will amount to more than double what it was before the pandemic.
As the demand for higher education accelerates, education agents are expected to play a critical role in international recruitment. Estimates from the international education consultancy, ICEF, suggest that more than 1 million students are placed through agents around the world, and rising. According to a 2021 report from the American International Recruitment Council and the National Association for College Admission Counseling, nearly half (49%) of U.S. colleges who responded were partnered with education agents, which is up from 36% of U.S. in 2017-2018. Agent growth is also on the rise in other popular higher education destination markets like Canada, whose international student population has grown sixfold over the past two decades.
Cohort Go was founded in 2012 by industry experts Mark Fletcher and Paul Jones, who combined their respective expertise in banking and commercial software to enable students to pay for their international education using their local currency, saving on fees and transfer rates. Grounded in their aligned vision to deliver value to the broader education ecosystems, the founders continually sought ways to work with education agents, institutions and students alike, and evolved their single solution into an online platform that offers a tailored experience, with capabilities to reduce costs, increase choice and improve productivity.
Today, Cohort Go partners with more than 1,000 agents globally. Students from more than 180 countries have leveraged Cohort Go, which services more than 60 currencies with local specialists all over the world. The integration of Cohort Go into Flywire’s existing agent platform will enable Flywire to provide even more value to agents, payers, and educational institutions.
Combination of software and payments powers future vertical ecosystems
Cohort Go’s strong regional focus in APAC, global agent relationships, and its existing payment infrastructure will help Flywire bolster its global payment network. Cohort Go’s relationships with payment partners all over the world will add to Flywire’s network of partners, further supporting Flywire’s clients and payers across all vertical industries.
Additionally, the acquisition of Cohort Go also enhances Flywire’s ability to accelerate Flywire’s roadmap to enable a broader suite of financial services targeted to international students and other payers. Already, Cohort Go is improving the way students pay for and save on health insurance, which augments Flywire’s focus on adding more value through its payer services.
“Working with our clients on delivering high-stakes, high-value tuition payments, we’ve continued to discover pain points in the education ecosystem that we believe we’re uniquely positioned to solve,” Massaro continued. “Cohort Go gives us an opportunity to accelerate the investment we have been making to further extend our value proposition to international students. With our Flywire Advantage, we can apply our existing framework of using software to drive value in payments to solve very specific use cases.”
Complements strong organic growth
The acquisition of Cohort Go is a continuation of Flywire’s long-term plan to supplement its strong organic growth and continually expand across all business lines. The acquisition is expected to be modestly accretive to revenue and Adjusted EBITDA. More details will be shared on the upcoming earnings call scheduled for August 9, 2022.
Flywire is a global payments enablement and software company. We combine our proprietary global payments network, next-gen payments platform and vertical-specific software to deliver the most important and complex payments for our clients and their customers.
Flywire leverages its vertical-specific software and payments technology to deeply embed within the existing A/R workflows for its clients across the education, healthcare and travel vertical markets, as well as in key B2B industries. Flywire also integrates with leading ERP systems, such as NetSuite, so organizations can optimize the payment experience for their customers while eliminating operational challenges.
ViewSonic | June 30, 2022
The New Taipei City Government in Taiwan and ViewSonic Corp., a leading global provider of visual solutions, have partnered to promote UNIVERSE by ViewSonic, an immersive 3D virtual environment designed for education, to schools at all levels in the city. This initiative will benefit about 400,000 K–12 students. The two organizations inked an agreement of collaboration to help schools become digital learning environments following a successful pilot program at Long Pu Elementary School in New Taipei City. Additionally, this week, ViewSonic showcased UNIVERSE in New Orleans, USA, at the ISTE Live 22 Conference & Expo.
"New Taipei City has been devoted to digital learning for years. We have observed that current online learning faces numerous challenges, such as a lack of interaction and sense of participation. UNIVERSE by ViewSonic simulates real-world interactions. Teachers and students can create personalized avatars to further engage with each other in this 3D space. Moreover, UNIVERSE can also be applied to cross-school teaching, thereby bridging the resource gap between schools. We look forward to having New Taipei City as the world's first city to adopt Metaverse for all levels of education, leading the way for schools all over the world in transforming how we teach and learn digitally."
- Chang Ming-Wen, New Taipei City Education Department Commissioner
"Current online education platforms still focus on unidirectional communication. It not only limits the development of interactive courses for educators but also makes it difficult to evaluate studentengagement during classes. Students cannot easily interact with peers and are prone to feel isolated. UNIVERSE by ViewSonic is the strongest solution to resolve these issues by making online learning feel as if it were in-person. Through the cooperation with New Taipei City, all teachers and students will benefit from the most innovative learning pedagogies.
- James Chu, Chairman and CEO of ViewSonic
Immersive virtual learning environments, including classrooms, lecture halls, and collaborative areas, are offered by UNIVERSE by ViewSonic. Emojis, chat messages, and realistic spatialized audio are just a few of the simple and user-friendly alternatives available to participants for various forms of communication. Teachers can project content, design pop quizzes, and separate students into breakout rooms for group discussions thanks to digital teaching aids. Teachers can also connect to ViewSonic's myViewBoard platform and use its cutting-edge teaching capabilities through the built-in browser.
rimini street | August 24, 2022
Rimini Street, Inc. a global provider of enterprise software products and services, the leading third-party support provider for Oracle and SAP software products and a Salesforce partner, today announced that the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) has switched from Oracle to Rimini Street for improved support and security of its Oracle database and technology platforms. In doing so, the University has slashed wait times for support requests, enjoyed improved service quality and innovative, advanced security to protect its database and application middleware. Rimini Street is also helping the University manage through the ongoing IT skills shortage by reducing the amount of IT labor required for support and instead, allowing resources to focus on the rapid transition to hybrid learning. UTS is one of Australia’s leading universities, with around 45,000 students and 4,000 staff. The IT department employs around 300 staff and is responsible for the digital experiences supporting the people, processes, and culture at the university. The University faced challenges during the pandemic including a massive shift to online learning and remote work, and a growing IT skills shortage. The large decline in the number of international students enrolling in Australia has also seen IT budgets shrink. Because of these limitations, UTS needed to refocus its strategic resources more efficiently.
“UTS, like all universities in Australia, has had to rapidly transition to a hybrid learning model that includes classroom and online service delivery. There are many innovations and technologies needed for the transition to hybrid learning; budgets are tightening across the board and the quality-of-service delivery expectations remain the same or higher, “Students can now log into their online classes from almost anywhere in the world which adds a new layer of complexity for the IT team. Fast, reliable, and secure systems are needed to keep up with the changing world and to remain a leading provider in the education market.”
Daniel Benad,group vice president and regional general manager,Australia,New Zealand and Oceania,Rimini Street
Focusing on the big issues with more time and money to spare Maintaining their Oracle database landscape was draining on the university’s IT budget and internal resources. Support tickets were often slow to be resolved by the software vendor, preventing IT staff from completing other system maintenance and responding quickly to new IT challenges. Staff were preoccupied with keeping databases operating properly in a rapidly scaling up environment and had little time to focus on university initiatives to support growth and innovation. “Skilled staff are only getting more expensive to hire and retaining these employees just to work on support and operational tasks for our enterprise software is no longer sustainable,” said Brian Kelly, Head of IT Operations at UTS. “We’ve had to really maximize the resources we have to keep our IT services growing, improving and meeting the needs of the university.” In addition, as UTS increasingly moved towards a hybrid learning model for its students, and a remote working environment for its staff, cost, capability, supportability, and flexibility were key to guaranteeing robust and reliable IT services. The rapid move into the remote workspace also opened new avenues and risks for cybersecurity attacks and breaches. As the number and location of users increased, so too did opportunities for unauthorized access. As such, the University was conscious it needed to increase the security of its Oracle software, particularly as routine patching was a costly and time-consuming endeavour for its IT team that did not necessarily provide the fastest protection model in the case of a discovered vulnerability. “UTS is relatively new to the hybrid working and learning space, and it’s important to be mindful of risks from such a rapid transformation,” said Kelly. The University began to look at ways to get improved support, better security and reduced operating costs for its Oracle Database landscape while also reducing the resource drain on its IT team. UTS turned to Rimini Street’s enterprise software support and security solutions. Lowering Costs and Response Times Each Rimini Street client benefits from the Company’s flexible, premium-level enterprise software support model, including its industry-leading Service Level Agreement of 10-minute response times for all critical Priority 1 cases. All clients are also assigned a Primary Support Engineer with an average of 20 years’ experience in enterprise software and backed by a team of functional and technical engineers. In addition, Rimini Street’s Database Management Services provide UTS with new expert skills from skilled and responsive engineers. Since partnering with Rimini Street, resolving support tickets is easier and quicker, with expert engineers available to respond to challenges at any time. “Being able to shrink how much time is spent on routine work has really allowed us to prioritise the bigger picture, and Rimini Street gives us time back in our day,” said Kelly. “The team is no longer worried about how long a patch or upgrade will take, how long it’ll take to get issues resolved, or how many hours they’ll have to dedicate to something routine. Rimini Street has taken care of that for us, and having such a quick turnaround for support has really eased up our workload. “Rimini Street gives us high-quality support for these business-as-usual activities without breaking our budget. Being able to be flexible with what senior ICT staff we hire means we’re putting a microscope on what our team actually needs, rather than allowing necessity to dictate it.” Rimini Street Protect - Proactive Security Having the time and resource availability enabled UTS to develop and deploy additional enterprise security enhancements. Further, Rimini Street’s security solutions gave UTS peace of mind that it would be secure and remain live while it implemented the additional security enhancements. “Completed security enhancements include secure identity management and access controls,” said Kelly. “Thanks to Rimini Street, we now have time and budget to spare and we are now looking at developing and deploying additional security measures utilizing a cloud-first strategy. We’re also working on automating service management and migrating to the cloud anything that improves the quality of user experience.” “UTS is yet another example of an institution that has benefited from Rimini Street’s comprehensive and effective database support and security,” said Benad. “As international borders continue to open and students choose Australia as an education destination, UTS’ improved service delivery and flexibility supporting a hybrid education model will play a huge part in improving the student learning experience.”
About Rimini Street, Inc.
Rimini Street, Inc. (Nasdaq: RMNI), a Russell 2000® Company, is a global provider of enterprise software products and services, the leading third-party support provider for Oracle and SAP software products and a Salesforce partner. The Company offers premium, ultra-responsive and integrated application management and support services that enable enterprise software licensees to save significant costs, free up resources for innovation and achieve better business outcomes. To date, more than 4,200 Fortune 500, Fortune Global 100, midmarket, public sector and other organizations from a broad range of industries have relied on Rimini Street as their trusted application enterprise software products and services provider.