Provo, Utah – October 1, 2019– VitalSmarts, a top 20 leadership training company, announced today it has been acquired by Leeds Equity Partners, which allows the organization to once again operate independently.
In addition to allowing VitalSmarts to operate independently, the investment from Leeds Equity Partners—a New York-based private equity firm focused exclusively on the education, training, and information services industries—will accelerate the company’s growth initiatives and further its presence in the corporate training and leadership development market. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“Today is an exciting milestone for VitalSmarts,” said Andrew Shimberg, CEO of VitalSmarts. “As we looked to the future of our incredible company, we considered several investment options and found Leeds to be the ideal partner based on our current market position and long-term vision. The partnership also demonstrates Leeds’ confidence in the future success of VitalSmarts and our mission to change the world by changing behavior.”
Leeds’ investment in VitalSmarts is part of the equity firm’s overarching strategy to assist management teams in the knowledge industries develop and achieve growth objectives. It is also an endorsement of and vote of confidence in VitalSmarts’ business objectives, which include: increasing the company’s strong revenue growth; expanding the number of people trained in the company’s line of award-winning training courses; and adding additional product offerings through the organic internal development and acquisition of market-tested intellectual property.
“Companies increasingly appreciate the importance of creating and fostering cultures that drive performance. Communication, execution and leadership skills need to be taught and practiced,” said Scott VanHoy, Partner of Leeds Equity Partners. “VitalSmarts is the gold standard in training employees with these critical, 21stcentury foundational skills such as resolving disagreements, building acceptance and overcoming resistance, speaking persuasively, and fostering teamwork.”
Shimberg will continue to lead the company as CEO. The change allows Shimberg and the VitalSmarts leadership team to lead the company independently of its former parent company, TwentyEighty.
“Partnering with Leeds gives us the opportunity to be agile and efficient in our decision-making and corporate strategy,” said Shimberg. “By doing so, we will accelerate our growth and further secure our position as the premier brand in corporate training and leadership development. We will use this ongoing investment to sustain and increase our research and product development efforts, ignite our marketing and sales engines, and grow our digital and online product offerings.”
Named a Top 20 Leadership Training Company, VitalSmarts is home to the award-winning Crucial Conversations, Crucial Accountability, Influencer, Getting Things Done, and The Power of Habit Training and New York Times bestselling books of the same titles. These courses enable organizations to achieve new levels of performance by changing employee behavior. VitalSmarts has consulted with more than 300 of the Fortune 500 companies and trained more than 2 million people worldwide. www.vitalsmarts.com
About Leeds Equity Partners
Leeds Equity Partners, LLC, is a New York-based private equity firm dedicated exclusively to partnering with management teams in the education, training, and information services industries (the “Knowledge Industries”). For more than 25 years, the firm has leveraged its expertise to create long-term value for its partner companies.To date, Leeds has invested six private equity funds and deployed over $2.7 billion of capital across a broad spectrum of companies within the Knowledge Industries. www.leedsequity.com