Comment: The government still doesn't get childcare
SBS.com.au - Trish Jha - July 15, 2015

In particular a new Regulation Impact Statement (RIS), prepared by lobby group Early Childhood Australia in concert with the Department of Social Services, highlights how the government's proposed package has failed to take into account the analysis and recommendations in the recent...

Private schools expand into early childhood learning
The Age - Henrietta Cook - July 12, 2015

Private schools are descending on childcare centres to recruit their next crop of students, some of whom are still crawling. As the competition for students becomes fierce, schools are advertising on childcare noticeboards and even handing out showbags. The Learning Sanctuary childcare centres...

Laying the foundations for social impact investing
Financial Review - James Eyers - July 12, 2015

Another prominent social impact investing deal was Goodstart, which raised $95 million to acquired 678 childcare centres from ABC Learning in 2009. Three years later, financial commitments had been met and investors had been paid back their capital plus a 12 per cent return. The NSW...

Working families to lose childcare priority under Abbott plan
The Australian - Natasha Bita - July 11, 2015

Working families will lose priority for daycare places under radical childcare reforms proposed by the Abbott government. Parents will also face random spot checks to prove they need childcare to work, study or volunteer, as the government tries to control ballooning costs. The regulation...

Chris Scott: a former truckie en route to childcare baron
Financial Review - Carrie LaFrenz and John Stensholt - July 10, 2015

A knockabout former truckie and avid golfer who once made and then lost a $200 million fortune is well on his way to becoming Australia's new childcare baron. Chris Scott, 68, is behind the meteoric rise of the listed G8 Education, which now controls 450 childcare centres that look after more than...

Jay Weatherill proposes state takeover of schools, childcare
Financial Review - Laura Tingle - July 8, 2015

The states should take responsibility for early childhood and school education, and hand higher education and vocational training to the federal government, according to South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill. Ahead of the federal and state leaders' retreat in Sydney later this month, Mr...

Affinity Education and Pulse Health chairman Stuart James on M&A train
Financial Review - Tim Binsted - July 7, 2015

Mr James and the Affinity management team, led by chief executive Justin Laboo, are hitting the phones and setting up meetings with large institutional investors to explain why the childcare centre operator is worth more than rival G8 Education is offering. Affinity dismissed last week G8's offer...

Trade in Services Agreement could see international childcare providers enter the Australian market
News.com.au - Charis Chang - July 7, 2015

A HIGHLY secretive deal being negotiated in Geneva could see giant international childcare providers enter the Australian market with more limited future government control on how they operate. More than 50 mostly wealthy countries calling themselves the "Really Good Friends of...

Analysts less opposed to G8-Affinity deal
The Australian - Michael Roddan - July 7, 2015

While Affinity Education has slammed G8 Education's acquisition approach as hostile and opportunistic, equity analysts are less opposed to the idea, saying that a takeover would compliment G8's portfolio, and lead to synergies across a post-merger group. On Friday, G8...

G8 Education says lower Affinity Education bid reflects poor earnings update
Financial Review - Jessica Gardner - July 6, 2015

Childcare operator G8 Education has hit back at a revelation by its takeover target Affinity Education that its recent $162 million bid for the smaller rival was a fraction of a confidential approach it had made in April. G8 confirmed a report in The Australian Financial Review...

Affinity slams G8 bid, complains to ASIC
The Australian - Mitchell Bingemann - July 6, 2015

Affinity Education is hitting back at the hostile takeover attempts from rival childcare provider G8 Education, appointing legal advisers and lodging a formal complaint with the corporate regulator ASIC. On Friday G8 launched a hostile takeover bid for its smaller rival Affinity Education...

G8 Education offer for Affinity Education is not its first, or best
Sydney Morning Herald - Stephen Cauchi - July 6, 2015

The latest bid, which Affinity chairman Stuart James has rejected as "opportunistic and highly conditional", is based on a share price of 69¢. It is understood Affinity said it would consider the proposal and both parties agreed to meet again on June 24. Sources said that at the next...

Childcare package will put Australia behind: researchers
Sydney Morning Herald - Judith Ireland - July 6, 2015

The Abbott government's childcare package is "decades out of date" and will put Australia behind other developed nations when it comes to early childhood reform, a new McKell Institute report says. University of New South Wales researchers Deborah Brennan and Elizabeth Adamson argue...

Australia lagging developed world on early-childhood education
Sydney Morning Herald - Deborah Brennan and Sam Crosby - July 5, 2015

Yet Australia, somehow, missed the memo. Here, childcare policy is still seen as something of a regrettable necessity, required mainly to get women back into the workforce. Reflecting a philosophy that is decades out of date, the Abbott government's package is focused on boosting...

Takeover targets: childcare back in fashion
The Australian - Rebecca Urban - July 4, 2015

Big business is quietly snapping up childcare centres across the country, as rising operating costs and increasing regulation continue to place pressure on independent operators. Yesterday's announcement of a $160 million-plus takeover bid by Australia's largest private-sector childcare...