AcadeMedia the company was formed in 1996. However, the oldest parts of the organization date back much farther than that.
Back in 1898 Hans Svenson Hermod started ”Malmö Språk- och Handelsinstitut” which would later be developed into what we now call Hermods.
Many years later, but still a long time before independent schools existed in Sweden, the next venture, which is now part of AcadeMedia, was launched. The year was 1968 and a Romanian immigrant called Mikael Elias started NTI. Mikael Elias came to Sweden in 1955 and his great interest throughout his life was education and teaching methods. His fundamental belief was that everyone can learn – as long as they have the right attitude and the right opportunities. One of his mottos was: You can be whatever you want. You just have to want it. This motto lives on within AcadeMedia to this day.
Since then AcadeMedia has made history. The preschool group Pysslingen was founded in 1984 and, despite a ban on reimbursements to independent child day care centers being introduced the same year (known as the Lex Pysslingen), became the first company in Sweden to run independent preschools.
Political reforms has since then transformed the market. When the independent schools reform was introduced in 1992, a large number of entrepreneurs started up their own schools and many of the education companies that are today part of AcadeMedia – such as Vittra, which was founded in 1993, and IT-Gymnasiet, which was founded in 1998 – are a result of this deregulation.
Hermods is launched under the name Malmö Språk- och handelsinstitut.
NTI is formed. NTI at that time offered correspondence courses to adults. NTI stands for Nordens Teknikerinstitut, and it only offered courses in technical subjects.
In March Pysslingen starts its first preschools: Smörblomman and Järven in Nacka, Stockholm. These are the first preschools in Sweden to be operated by a private enterprise. Both preschools still exist today.
Friskolereformen (a reform bill under which independent schools would receive an education voucher for each student) went into effect. Numerous entrepreneurs started their own schools. Parent cooperatives, employee cooperatives, limited liability companies and foundations were common formats for this. Many of the education companies now part of AcadeMedia were started by entrepreneurs in the 1990s.
Vittra is launched in Sundbyberg.
AcadeMedia is formed.
IT-Gymnasiet is launched.
AcadeMedia is listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange. This gave the company many small and large shareholders, although trading in the shares was fairly limited. At most AcadeMedia had around 14 000 shareholders.
NTI-gymnasiet is launched. The focus is the same as for NTI-skolan, i.e. technology and media. NTI is now also offering programs for upper secondary school students.
We decide to invest more in adult education and purchase more companies in that segment. One of them is Eductus – today one of our largest education companies.
Between 2004 and 2007 a number of decisions are made that would have an important impact on AcadeMedia’s future. One is to grow AcadeMedia by acquiring other education companies. This is when NTI’s and AcadeMedia’s history converge. In 2007 NTI is purchased and becomes AcadeMedia’s first real independent school company.
The same year AcadeMedia buys Knowledge Partner Syd AB. This strengthens the brand AcadeMedia Masters, which offers advanced professional development courses.
In August 2007 Ljud & Bildskolan (LBS) and Drottning Blankas Gymnasieskola are acquired.
This is an important year in AcadeMedia’s history. It is when we merge with Anew Learning, which owns brands like Vittra, and form Sweden’s largest education company. After this merger we have more than 20 000 students and over 70 schools. Our business segments are preschools up to higher education.
The year we exceed the 100 school mark.
Swedish company EQT purchases 79.6 percent of the shares in AcadeMedia and US company Providence buys 17.7 percent. The rest of the shares are owned by private individuals who chose not to sell to EQT or Providence. In the second half of the year AcadeMedia’s shares are de-listed from the Stockholm Stock Exchange.
Pysslingen, ProCivitas, Plusgymnasiet and Plushögskolan become part of AcadeMedia. EQT becomes the sole owner of AcadeMedia.
AcadeMedia takes over JB-grundskolorna Galären, Växthuset, Karin Boye and Björkenässkolan (formerly JB Lödde), which together become AcadeMedias Fria Grundskolor (independent compulsory schools). Designgymnasiet and KompetensUtvecklingsInstitutet also become part of AcadeMedia.
Stockholms Internationella Restaurangskola and KLARA Gymnasium merge with AcadeMedia, as does one of Sweden’s oldest education companies Hermods. This year AcadeMedia also ventures outside Sweden’s borders when the Norwegian preschool chain Espira becomes part of AcadeMedia.
AcadeMedia takes the first step in its international journey outside Scandinavia when the German preschool company Joki becomes part of AcadeMedia. Joki, which has seven preschools in Munich, has been part of AcadeMedia since February 1, 2016.