This company owns 52 private schools across Britain, the Continent and Southeast Asia, educating more than 15,000 pupils each year. In 2004 Englefield Capital backed a team led by chairman Chris Woodhead, the former chief inspector of schools, to acquire 18 Asquith schools from Lyceum. Cognita is still on the acquisitions trail, most recently paying £29m for three international schools in Thailand. Chief executive Rees Withers saw sales at the Milton Keynes company increase 25% to £138.6m in 2009.
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