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January 16, 2024
2 mins read

Crimson Education Nixes Capital Raise Buzz with Cold Reality


Crimson Education, a New Zealand education company, has denied reports that it is preparing for a capital raise at a valuation of NZ$1 billion. While the company confirmed it briefly explored an approach with RBC Capital Markets in 2023, it stated that there is currently no fundraising activity. The report also mentioned the possibility of a US or Australian listing for Crimson Education and confirmed that founder Jamie Beaton is pursuing a master’s degree in finance at Princeton.

Key points:

  • Crimson Education denies report of capital raise at NZ$1 billion valuation
  • RBC Capital Markets had advised the company on a past approach, but there is currently no fundraising activity
  • Crimson Education is considering a US or Australian listing
  • Founder Jamie Beaton is pursuing a master’s degree in finance at Princeton

Venture capital: Jamie Beaton’s unicorn, Crimson Education, pours cold water on report

Former Prime Minister Sir John Key with Crimson Global Academy president Jamie Beaton.

Has Crimson Education hired an investment banking firm to screen potential new backers for a capital raise at a “unicorn” valuation (a unicorn being venture capital-speak for a private company worth at least $1 billion)? A $19 million capital raise in late 2023 led by NZ Icehouse Ventures – which tipped in $10m – valued Crimson at US$550m ($872m). “New Zealand’s Crimson Education, which helps high-schoolers get into A-league universities like Harvard and Oxford, is preparing to test its NZ$1b valuation,” AFR’s market gossip column reported this morning.

“Street Talk understands Crimson has been working with RBC Capital Markets’ bankers to vet potential minority partners to join its register alongside the likes of Chase Coleman’s Tiger Global Management, deceased hedge fund legend Julian Robertson’s Tiger Management and former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd”. Former NZ PM Sir John Key, Sir Stephen Tindall and Icehouse are also backers.

But a Crimson insider poured cold water on the report. RBC had given advice on an inbound (unsolicited) approach “a while ago”, but today there’s no fundraising activity.

In a formal repsonse, the firm said, “Crimson Education is always open to opportunities with unique strategic investors and partners and confirms that the company briefly explored an inbound approach with RBC Capital Markets in 2023. There is nothing to report at this time. We are in a fortunate position to be selective about our partners, and our main focus is on execution at this stage.”

Another element of the report was on the money. The Herald understands a US or Australian listing is indeed under consideration. And there was also confirmation founder Jamie Beaton has indeed embarked on his ninth degree: This time a master’s in finance at Princeton, focusing on quantitative finance.


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