Aperture Education

Cherry Tree Advises Aperture Education on its Sale to Riverside Insights, A Portfolio Company of Alpine Investors

“After going through a careful selection process, we chose Cherry Tree based on their extensive experience working with edtech companies, their focus on our goals and objectives, and their appreciation for our values and commitment to all stakeholders. We were not disappointed! They provided the context and advice we needed to help us navigate many attractive options along the way, negotiated strongly and effectively on the issues that mattered most to us, and their team worked long hours to ensure our team was always prepared and that the necessary information was provided and correct.”

—Jessica Adamson, CEO, Aperture Education

K-12 Education; Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)

SaaS provider of research-based social and emotional learning (SEL) assessments to K-12 schools

Fort Mill, SC

Sale to PE-Backed Strategic Buyer

Transaction Overview

In June 2022, Aperture Education, the leading provider of research-based social and emotional learning (SEL) assessments for K-12 schools, announced that it had been acquired by Riverside Insights, a leading developer of research-based assessments and analytics. With more than 65 years of combined research and SEL experience, Aperture sets the standard for research-based SEL assessment solutions as it’s DESSA assessment system (based on the CASELTM framework) provides an in-depth, comprehensive view of student social and emotional skills and is entirely strength-based. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The addition of Aperture’s SEL solutions to the Riverside portfolio of research-based ability and achievement assessments will help K-12 educators obtain the most valid, reliable and comprehensive view of each learner. The combined companies have a synergistic goal of enriching one billion lives globally by 2030.

“Riverside and Aperture have very similar company cultures. We share an entrepreneurial energy and have fixed our eyes on future growth,” said Jessica Adamson, CEO at Aperture Education. “With our research-roots, we believe the right insights empower educators to better serve students, and together, we believe we can more effectively reach educators to scale our impact.”

“With Riverside’s strong research tradition blended with Aperture’s SEL product expertise and vision, we are excited to continue our commitment to creating insights to understand the whole learner. Together, we believe that through our assessments, we can make a greater impact in the lives of students and educators” said Rajib Roy, CEO of Riverside Insights.

Cherry Tree’s Role:

Cherry Tree was engaged to advise Aperture Education, its board of directors and its shareholders in identifying the best partner to help the Company achieve its next phase of growth, while maximizing shareholder value. The Cherry Tree team advised Aperture in a process that included both strategic entities as well as growth-oriented investors, where its role included preparing evaluation materials, effectively communicating this compelling investment opportunity to potential investors and buyers, engaging with a wide range of qualified parties, soliciting proposals and negotiating attractive terms, and supporting the management team through the diligence process and finalizing the definitive agreements.

About Aperture Education:

Aperture Education has empowered over 6,500 schools and out-of-school time programs across North America to measure, strengthen, and support social and emotional competence in K-12 youth and educators. The Aperture System includes the DESSA suite of strength-based assessments, CASEL™-aligned intervention strategies, and robust reporting, all in one easy-to-use digital platform. This system enables education leaders to make strategic, data-based decisions about SEL within their organizations. Aperture has supported more than one million students in their social and emotional growth and continues to develop innovative solutions to bring the whole child into focus. To learn more, visit www.ApertureEd.com.

About Riverside Insights:

Riverside Insights, one of the nation’s leading and most long-standing developers of research-based assessments, is led by a powerful mission: to provide insights that help elevate potential and enrich the lives of students, clinical patients, employees, and organizations globally. For more information, visit http://www.RiversideInsights.com.

About Alpine Investors:

Alpine Investors is a people-driven private equity firm that is committed to building enduring companies by working with, learning from, and developing exceptional people. Alpine specializes in investments in companies in the software and services industries. Its PeopleFirst strategy includes a talent program that allows Alpine to bring leadership to situations where additional or new management is needed post-transaction. Alpine is currently investing out of its $2.25 billion eighth fund. For more information, please visit http://www.alpineinvestors.com.

About Cherry Tree & Associates

Cherry Tree & Associates is a private investment banking firm headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Founded in 1980, it specializes in M&A transactions for both buyers and sellers of middle market companies.  Additionally, it conducts private placements for high quality, entrepreneurially managed growth companies, provides strategic advisory services for CEOs and boards of directors, and prepares fairness opinions and other valuation services.

Cherry Tree & Associates provides investment banking services through our FINRA-licensed broker dealer.