GCA Altium is now part of Houlihan Lokey

Transaction Details

March 1, 2017


Digital Media and Media

Deal Type


Deal Value


Deal Team

Alessandro Soprano, Raffi Salibian, Lorenzo Cabizza

GCA Altium advises on the sale of a 70% stake in Alpha Test to Aksìa Private Equity

GCA Altium acted as exclusive financial advisor to Italian Private Equity firm Alcedo SGR and the management / shareholders on the sale of a majority stake in Alpha Test, the Italian market leader in University admission test preparation, to Aksìa Private Equity.

The independent Private Equity firm Aksìa Group SGR acquired 70% of Alpha Test, a Milan-based leader in the field of professional education that specializes in books and courses for university admission test preparation. Alcedo III Fund, which has owned a 45% stake since 2013, is exiting from the shareholding structure following this transaction.

With a catalog that includes more than 600 titles, 100 new editions per year, 5 million copies sold and 40,000 hours of lessons offered in 35 Italian cities to over 80,000 students, Alpha Test is synonymous with preparation for academic testing, especially at university level. Alpha Test was founded in 1987 by Massimiliano Bianchini and brothers Renato and Alberto Sironi. Together with key managers Paolo Colusso and Stefano Bertocchi they retain a 30% share of the Group and will continue to lead the company. Alpha Test has become one of the largest Italian publishing groups in terms of sales and profitability, with outstanding results compared to the general publishing industry trend, which has been declining for the past few years.

With the Alpha Test sale, which follows the recent sale of the Verona-based company Master Climate Solutions (MCS) to the Danish company Dantherm, the disinvestment of equity investments held by the Alcedo III Fund is complete. Aksìa replaces Alcedo III Fund with a growth project that aims to support the management in the further development of the business, expanding the range of products on offer and entering adjacent market segments, either directly or through acquisitions.

Marco Rayneri, Partner of Aksìa Group, said: “We decided to invest in an undisputed leader in the educational and university preparation fields. The new strategy will allow the group to strengthen its presence in a market which continues to evolve in terms of technological innovation and that requires increasingly qualified preparation to educate new generations for the challenges of the future job market.”

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