Cardiff-based online learning platform Learna has undergone a management buyout, Insider Media has reported.

Learna offers online postgraduate diplomas and master’s medical courses, trading under the Diploma MSc and StudyPRN brands, partnering with the University of Wales, the University of South Wales and the University of Gibraltar.

Learna’s chief operating officer Courtenay Probert and commercial director Rachel Probert will lead the business following the partial exit of the company’s founder and chairman Professor Steve Davies.

Funding for the transaction was provided by Harwood Capital Management Group and Barclays, both of which become minority shareholder.

The two Proberts stated: “Since 2010, we have successfully launched more than 27 online postgraduate courses in healthcare and are still achieving records levels of student intake each year. The transaction marks the next milestone for the business as we embark on increasing the number of courses, consistently delivering best in class service and empowering our students to undertake their professional and educational development across the world. The funding provided by Barclays and Harwood will help us accelerate some of this growth and bolster an already very talented team.”

Jamie Ricketts, Barclays’ business relationship director, said: “As champions of local business, it is essential that we support local growing businesses such as Learna. The business is a great example of an entrepreneur using their experience, contacts and skills to develop a successful business.”

Gambit Corporate Finance acted as lead advisor on the transaction. Legal advice to Davies was provided by Acuity Law. Berry Smith provided legal advice to management, while Harwood was advised by BDB Pitmans.

Date published: 8 April 2021

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