The company posted 5.2% increase in half-year earnings
GEMS targets higher income from students and enrollment in 2018 financial year
GEMS Education, the largest private school operator in the UAE, said on Wednesday it is targeting higher average revenue per students and an increase in enrolments number in 2018 financial year after posting a 5.2 per cent jump in the first-half earnings.
The company, whose financial year ends on August 31, expects its full-year 2018 enrolment to increase 5.5 per cent year-on-year to 121,000, while average revenue per student is projected to climb by 4.5 per cent to $8,450, it said in a statement to Nasdaq Dubai, where its bonds are listed.
“Our business continues to grow year on year. We have seen continued expansion in enrolment across our schools in the UAE and Qatar,” said Dino Varkey, chief executive officer of GEMS.
Companies such as GEMS, which operates in the Arabian Gulf and India, are benefitting from increased demand for schools as governments increase spending on education.
The total number of students in the GCC education sector is forecast to reach 15 million in 2020, rising at a compound annual growth rate of 3.6 per cent from an estimated 12.6 million in 2015, according to a 2016 report from Dubai-based investment bank Alpen Capital.
The demand for schools in the GCC region is projected to grow at a 3 per cent CAGR from an estimated 43,903 in 2015 to 50,978 in 2020.
GEMS’ earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) in the six-month period ending February 28 rose 5.2 per cent to $202.5 million. Revenue grew 9.5 per cent to $602.6m.
The company has also signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Education and Mohammed Alsubeaei & Sons Investments Company to expand its network of schools in the kingdom.