BrightPath completes transformative Peekaboo acquisition - Increased total capacity of 40% anticipated to generate significantly accretive cash flow per share

TORONTO, Sept. 9, 2016 /CNW/ - BrightPath Early Learning Inc. ("BrightPath" or the "Company") (TSX-V: BPE), a leading Canadian provider of high-quality, comprehensive early childhood education and care, announced today it has closed its transformative acquisition of 20 Peekaboo child care centres located in the Greater Toronto Area. This acquisition was first announced on June 28, 2016.

Peekaboo Acquisition Highlights:

(All amounts are in Canadian currency)

  • The purchase price was $22.0 million of which $19.2 million was released at closing;
  • BrightPath financed the acquisition entirely through its credit facility, which was recently increased to $62.5 million on the strength of the Company's operations and the value of its corporate owned real estate portfolio;
  • The acquisition is expected to be highly accretive to the Company's Funds From Operations ("FFO") per common share reflecting Peekaboo's profitable operations;
  • The Peekaboo centres, based on historical metrics, generate approximately $3.0 million in incremental FFO annually, net of interest costs related to financing the transaction from the Company's credit facility;
  • The agreement with Peekaboo's vendors includes financial holdbacks totaling $2.8 million that may be released upon successful completion of various milestones over the next 36 months, including revenue metrics and amounts in respect of vendors' representations and warranties;
  • The transaction increases the number of facilities in Ontario from 15 to 35, and increases the Company's total number of licensed spaces by 40% from approximately 6,100 to 8,600;
  • With the addition of 20 Peekaboo centres, Ontario is now BrightPath's largest market, representing 46% of the Company's total capacity across Canada versus 25% previously. Alberta-based licensed spaces now represent 45% of the portfolio, the remainder being in British Columbia
  • The Peekaboo centres are located in the Regions of Peel and Halton, two of the largest and fastest growing communities within the Greater Toronto Area;
  • The acquired Peekaboo business holds franchise agreements with 11 affiliate centres, providing BrightPath with a new revenue stream and potential near-term additional growth opportunities; and
  • The close of the Peekaboo acquisition follows the recent purchase of The Lawrence Park School Ltd. in Toronto, which added 95 licensed spaces to the Company's portfolio and was announced on July 26, 2016.

"The close of the Peekaboo acquisition represents our most significant growth milestone to date and is transformative on a number of levels," said Mary Ann Curran, Chief Executive Officer of BrightPath. "Most significantly, it adds considerable scale to our existing platform in a market that shows signs of increasing strength. We believe there is opportunity to further enhance the Peekaboo brand with BrightPath's high-quality child development and care programs. Furthermore, as the transaction was completed without equity dilution, it will deliver highly accretive pro forma cash flow growth for our shareholders." 

Ms. Curran added, "We welcome Peekaboo staff and families, and look forward to optimizing the combined Company's technology, other resources and best practices to improve operations while providing premium quality early childhood education and care to the children entrusted to us."

NON- IFRS PERFORMANCE MEASURES

The Company uses FFO as an indicator of financial performance. FFO is calculated by adjusting net profit (loss) to add back acquisition costs expensed as incurred, depreciation and certain other non-cash items.

FFO does not have a standardized meaning prescribed by IFRS. The Company's method of calculating FFO may be different from other entities and, accordingly, may not be comparable to such other entities. FFO does not represent cash flow from operating activities as defined by IFRS, is not indicative of cash available to fund all liquidity requirements, including capital for growth, and is not to be considered as an alternative to IFRS-based net profit (loss) for the purpose of evaluating operating performance.

ABOUT BRIGHTPATH EARLY LEARNING INC.

BrightPath Early Learning Inc. is a Canadian leader in child care and early education with 76 locations in major markets across the country. Meeting the highest standards in curriculum, nutrition, technology and recreational programming, BrightPath is committed to providing families with the very best child development and care Canada has to offer. 

For more information, visit www.BrightPathKids.com/corporate or contact Dale Kearns, President & Chief Financial Officer of BrightPath Early Learning Inc. at (403) 705-0362 ext. 406. 

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Certain statements contained herein constitute forward-looking statements regarding the future growth, results of operations, performance and opportunities of the Company. In particular, this news release contains forward-looking statements with respect to the accretive nature of the Peekaboo acquisition and the FFO anticipated to be generated by the assets acquired pursuant to the Peekaboo acquisition. Forward-looking statements can generally be identified by the use of, but not limited to, the following words: "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "budget", "scheduled", "estimate", "forecast", "pro forma", "anticipate" or "does not anticipate", "believe", "intend", "inferred", "potential" and similar expressions or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "should", "would", "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved. Forward-looking statements are not historical facts, but reflect the Company's current expectations regarding future results or events based on information currently available and what the Company believes to be reasonable assumptions. All forward-looking statements are qualified by these cautionary statements. 

Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, assumptions and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from those expressed, implied or projected include, but are not limited to, general economic conditions, the Company's ability to meet and maintain forecasted occupancy levels, general government policies, continued availability of government child care subsidies to parents, unexpected costs or liabilities related to acquisitions, construction, environmental matters, legal matters, changes in interest rates, credit spreads and the availability of financing. In addition, please refer to the Risks and Uncertainties section of the Company's annual Management's Discussion and Analysis. As such, the Company gives no assurance that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements.

Readers should not place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any such statement, reflect new information or reflect the occurrence of future events or circumstances, except as required by securities laws.

SOURCE BrightPath Early Learning Inc.

For further information: Dale Kearns, President & CFO, BrightPath Early Learning Inc., Office: (403) 705-0362 ext. 406, Toll Free: (888) 808-2252, http://www.brightpathkids.com; Joe Racanelli, Investor Relations, NATIONAL Equicom, (416) 586-1943, jracanelli@national.ca

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