The proposed sale of 56 campuses of the for-profit Corinthian Colleges chain to ECMC, a student loan guarantor, has been postponed until next month, Corinthian said in a corporate filing. The deal, which the U.S. Department of Education brokered, had been scheduled to close in January. It was pushed back earlier this month, and now moved to February.
Corinthian said the closing of most of the campuses included in the purchase agreement is now scheduled for February 2. A second closing for the remaining campuses will follow.
"Although the company and the purchaser have made substantial progress towards the satisfaction of conditions to closing," Corinthian said, "and expect to satisfy the remainder soon, not all of such conditions were satisfied in time to conduct an initial closing."
The deal has been controversial. Some consumer groups have opposed the sale to ECMC, calling the nonprofit agency a "troubled entity" and saying the arrangement will be bad for students. The department, however, has defended the sale, saying it averts "disruption and displacement" of 40,000 students and strengthens their "education prospects."
ECMC on Wednesday issued a written statement about the delay.
“While we continue to make good progress, the enormity of the transaction and the regulatory approvals needed prior to close have extended our target closing date to early in February," the guaranty agency said. "We are pleased with all we’ve been able to accomplish over the last several weeks, especially given the holiday timing, and are continuing to move full steam ahead with our plans to make a difference as a nonprofit provider of career school education driven to promote the long-term success of our graduates.”
(Note: This article has been changed from an earlier version to include new information from ECMC and a Corinthian corporate filing.)
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