Intuition’s acquisitions form basis of new division


7 Nov 2003

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Intuition, the e-learning provider in which financier Dermot Desmond has an 85pc stake, is to launch a new computer literacy division following its acquisition of the assets of fellow e-learning firms Unlimited and Educational Multimedia Group (EMG). Their portfolio of products will form the division’s core offerings.

The value of the transactions was not disclosed but according to industry sources it is “not insignificant”. Both companies were well established in the marketplace: it is believed that EMG had revenues of about €2m while Unlimited was bigger, turning over about €4m. Both companies ceased trading earlier this year.

The acquisitions are not Intuition’s only recent buys. In April this year, the company acquired the assets of another failed e-learning content provider, EmergeSmart, which focused on the life sciences sector.

It is understood that the content assets acquired by Intuition are split evenly between computer application training courseware and computer certification products such as the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL). Intuition Computer Literacy will offer courseware and services across all four leading training certifications – ECDL/ICDL (the International Computer Driving Licence; IC3 (Internet and Computing Core Certification); The OCR CLAIT Suite; and Microsoft Office Specialist.

The new division will inherit former Unlimited/EMG clients including HSBC, AIB, Intel, Ulster Bank, Guinness, Motorola and several government and large private sector organisations.

A number of key employees from Unlimited and EMG have joined Intuition, including Emmet Hedigan, the former managing director of Unlimited who now heads up Intuition Computer Literacy. Brendan Thompson, Unlimited’s former head of sales and Paul Colbert, the former sales director of EMG, have also come on board.

David Harrison, Intuition’s chief executive, said the move represented the culmination of a significant expansion programme over the past 18 months for the Dublin and London-based company.

“Building on our existing activities in financial services, life sciences and the public sector, Intuition now has a significant presence in the computer literacy market – a strategic move made in response to the needs of our clients.”

Harrison said that Intuition planned to invest “the guts of €1m” in the newly acquired portfolio of products, mainly in the areas of product completion/QA and marketing. A total of 12 employees work in the new division.

By Brian Skelly