Acquisition of HT2Labs

Learning Pool Expands into US Market

Learning Pool / HT2 LabsNottingham (UK), June 2019 - The online learning company Learning Pool has announced the acquisition of HT2 Labs, the Oxfordshire-based learning innovation company best known for its market-leading Learning Locker and Curator products. The acquisition complements and strengthens Learning Pool's own portfolio of innovative technology, whilst further expanding its domestic and international operations with offices near Oxford, UK and Boston, MA, USA.

HT2 Labs, led by Dr Ben Betts, is the third business to join the Learning Pool Group in the last three years, following the acquisitions of Mind Click in Nottingham and MediaCorp in Glasgow. Learning Pool is backed by The Carlyle Cardinal Ireland (CCI), the private equity fund established by The Carlyle Group (NASDAQ: CG) and Cardinal Capital Group, which invested in Learning Pool in 2016 to support its continued growth and development. Since then, the company has enjoyed triple digit growth, completed three acquisitions, and doubled its workforce.

HT2 Labs is a true pioneer in learning technologies, with a well-earned reputation for creating leading edge learning solutions that use modern technology to deliver innovative business outcomes. Globally, HT2 Labs has more than twelve thousand installations of Learning Locker, making it the world's most-installed Learning Record Store (LRS).  It’s Curatr Learning Experience Platform (LXP) scooped gold for "Best advance in Social Learning" in the Brandon Hall Group Excellence awards last year. The company also recently won The Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation.

Learning Pool is already an HT2 Labs partner, reselling Learning Locker to customers and using the technology as a core part of Headstream, the company’s own next generation LXP. This acquisition will see the rapid deployment of the world’s first technology platform that offers genuine learning in the workflow through social learning and curation; AI recommendation and natural language processing; advanced analytics; and chatbot technology.

Learning Pool’s CEO Paul McElvaney said, "We’re delighted to welcome Ben, Alan, and the HT2 Labs team to Learning Pool. We’ve been collaborating with HT2 Labs for a number of years, and we are excited that they are now becoming a core part of our business, working even more closely with a team who share our passion for innovation, creating positive business impact, and driving customer service.

"Learning Pool is driven by innovation, and our acquisitions over the last three years have all had a single focus: to expand our presence and support our ambition to be the most innovative company in our sector, not just in the UK, but globally. We continue to invest heavily in the development and delivery of world-class learning technologies and content for our growing, diverse network of customers. The acquisition of HT2 Labs further cements our leadership position in our sector and positions us strongly for the future."

Ben Betts, CEO at HT2 Labs said, "Joining forces with Learning Pool will enable us to quickly deliver the innovation we’re known for, but at a much greater scale. Both businesses have a passion for learning and an incredible focus on delivering exceptional customer service and measurable results for our clients around the world. Our vision is effective, seamless, right-sized eLearning delivered at the moment of need on the most appropriate device, using the most appropriate learning approach. The combined product roadmap we’ve drawn up means that we can make that future available to customers right now."

Ben is reinvesting in Learning Pool as part of the transaction and will join the executive team at Learning Pool as Chief Product Officer. In this role, he will lead the company’s innovation strategy. Central to this will be the creation of Learning Pool Labs, an ambitious initiative that offers Learning Pool staff and customers an opportunity to investigate real-world problems and develop pioneering learning solutions that improve business outcomes.