October 26, 2021

Leadscon 2010 in Las Vegas features a panel on The Future of Education Lead Generation

The Future of Education Lead Generation For those generating or wishing to generate leads, almost all will turn their attention to the online education lead generation space at some point in time. It is a sector that has public companies worth tens of billions of dollars in market cap combined, spends upwards of a billion dollars annually buying leads, and has seen incredible growth for almost a decade. Online education has bolstered the fortunes of so many in lead generation and the broader advertising world. Despite the rapid success or perhaps because of it, the future contains some uncertainty. Is this a gravy train that might soon end or one whose next ten years can look as promising as the past.Moderator: Tom Ferrara, Chief Executive Officer, FFVentures & Owner, ForProfitEDU.com
Panelists: Joe Charlson, SVP Strategic Operations, Education Management, LLC
Brian Eberman, Chief Executive Officer, Avenue100 Media Solutions
Terrence Thomas, Executive Vice President, Marketing, Education Dynamics

LeadsCon Las Vegas 2010 takes place February 23rd and February 24, 2010. Join for two full days of unforgettable learning and unparalleled networking.

Register: http://www.leadscon.com/leadscon-las-vegas-2010/register.html

CUnet/Nelnet acquires Sparkroom.

PARAMUS, N.J., and TORONTO, Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ — CUnet, a subsidiary of Nelnet Inc. (NYSE: NNI), announced today that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Sparkroom, a leading provider of enrollment marketing automation and lead performance management solutions. The parties anticipate closing the transaction on February 1, 2010.

Sparkroom provides business intelligence and lead delivery software that helps organizations immediately improve marketing efficiency and increase profitability by managing, measuring, and optimizing lead performance across all direct response marketing channels. Sparkroom's Lead Performance Management product suite, which includes LeadDeliver, LeadIQ, and Lead Market Analytics, enables direct marketers in higher education to:

   -- Understand the performance of every lead, regardless of the channel 

   -- Proactively manage lead vendors 

   -- Align marketing with sales or enrollment targets 

   -- Immediately improve the performance of marketing spend

“We are excited by the opportunities created by bringing CUnet and Sparkroom together,” said Matt McLaughlin, President of CUnet. “Sparkroom's technology products will complement CUnet's interactive media and marketing services to provide a powerful solution for colleges to drive the most value from their marketing spend. It's a great fit that will benefit marketers in the higher education sector.”

CUnet provides clients with a wide range of performance marketing services including vendor lead management, call center management, search marketing, display advertising, social media management, mobile marketing, and school operations consulting. Sparkroom's Lead Performance Management product suite provides comprehensive technology tools to education marketers, allowing them to make faster, data-driven decisions that drive marketing efficiency and business profitability. The companies will offer an industry-leading mix of marketing services and technology solutions for educational institutions from a single provider.

“Sparkroom's mission is to enable our customers to optimize their investments in interactive direct response marketing,” said Jamie McDonald, CEO of Sparkroom. “By teaming up with CUnet, we will accelerate our ability to deliver on that mission and bring new ground-breaking products to the market, which will continue to improve marketing efficiency for higher education marketers.”

Sparkroom co-founders McDonald and Jamie Shulman, Vice President of Operations, will continue to lead Sparkroom and its associates from Toronto.

While the purchase price is not material to Nelnet, the acquisition adds strategic value to the company by broadening its lead generation products and services business and further strengthens its lead generation technology.

About CUnet

CUnet is the premier provider of online performance media and interactive marketing services driving qualified student inquiries and enrollments for the higher education industry. Founded in 2003, the company has grown rapidly to oversee the promotional campaigns of over 1 000 colleges, universities, and career schools throughout the United States and Canada. CUnet is dedicated to creating cost-effective marketing programs using a mix of online media strategies and formats to find prospective students, generate qualified responses, and maximize enrollments and starts. CUnet is a subsidiary of Nelnet, a leader in education planning and financing for more than 30 years. CUnet is based in Paramus, NJ. For more information, visit www.cunet.com.

About Sparkroom

Sparkroom delivers innovative solutions to direct marketers, including its comprehensive Lead Performance Management software and services. Sparkroom Lead Deliver, Lead IQ, and Lead Market Analytics deliver a hosted business intelligence platform to give direct response marketers the tools and expertise needed to measure, manage, and optimize their lead acquisition spending across every direct response channel. Sparkroom's software, which it hosts and delivers to its customers on demand, enables customers to capture, store, and analyze information generated by their lead buying activities and to gain critical business insights into the performance and efficiency of marketing and sales initiatives and other business processes. Founded in 2007, Sparkroom is privately held. For more information, visit www.sparkroom.com.

Information contained in this press release, other than historical information, may be considered forward-looking in nature and is subject to various risks, uncertainties, and assumptions. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those anticipated, estimated, or expected. Among the key factors that may have a direct bearing on Nelnet's operating results, performance, or financial condition expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements are the uncertain nature of the expected benefits from the acquisition and the ability to successfully integrate operations, changes in terms of student loans and the educational credit marketplace changes in the demand for educational financing or in financing preferences of educational institutions, students and their families, or changes in the general interest rate environment and in the securitization markets for education loans.

(code #: nnig)

SOURCE Nelnet Inc.

/CONTACT: Media, Ben Kiser, +1-402-458-3024; Investors, Phil Morgan, +1-402-458-3038; both of Nelnet Inc.

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Apollo Group, Inc. Resolves University of Phoenix False Claims Act Case Agreement Provides for $67.5 Million Payment, Plus Attorneys Fees

 PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Dec. 14, 2009– Apollo Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: APOL) (the “Company”) today announced that it has entered into an agreement with the United States of America, acting through the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California and the U.S. Department of Justice on behalf of the U.S. Department of Education, and with two private plaintiffs to resolve the False Claims Act lawsuit filed in 2003 against subsidiary University of Phoenix, United States of America ex rel. Mary Hendow and Julie Albertson v. University of Phoenix. Although a party to the agreement, the U.S. Department of Justice at no time intervened in the lawsuit, which was pursued by the two private plaintiffs as a qui tam action on behalf of the government. Under the terms of the agreement, the Company will pay $67.5 million to the United States. A separate agreement provides for the payment by the Company of $11 million in attorneys fees to the plaintiffs, as required by the False Claims Act. “This agreement not only brings closure to a long-running dispute and enables the Company to avoid the uncertainty and further expense associated with protracted litigation, it opens the door for a more constructive partnership with our lead regulator, the U.S. Department of Education,” said Charles B. Edelstein, co-chief executive officer of Apollo Group. “Apollo Group is committed to rigorous regulatory and compliance systems to serve and protect the academic innovations for which we are known,” added Gregory Cappelli, co-chief executive officer of Apollo Group and chairman of Apollo Global, Inc. “Resolution enables us to focus on our core mission of providing access to quality higher education opportunities for students who have been historically underserved by the conventional system of higher education – and at a time when such access is more critical than ever.” The agreement makes clear that the Company does not acknowledge, admit or concede any liability, wrongdoing, noncompliance or violation as a result of the settlement. Moreover, the Company is confident it will not face any further civil or administrative exposure relating to its compliance with the Higher Education Act provision relating to incentive compensation for the period of March 1997 through the present as a result of the various releases and related agreements it has obtained from the U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Department of Justice and the plaintiffs. “While we believe that the compensation practices and programs of University of Phoenix have always complied fully with applicable federal laws and regulations, the regulations at issue in this case were unclear and inconsistent and, even after they were clarified by Safe Harbor provisions, involved complex judgments and interpretations,” said P. Robert Moya, executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of Apollo Group. “Settlement on these terms eliminates the risks inherent in taking any case to trial and, ultimately, is in the best interests of our students, employees and shareholders.” “On behalf of the plaintiffs, we are pleased that the parties have been able to reach an agreement on terms that protect the interests of the government and the taxpayers,” said Robert J. Nelson, Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, lead counsel for the plaintiffs. “The case raised several challenging issues, many of them novel, which made settlement of the case appropriate.”

About the Litigation Under the False Claims Act, plaintiffs – or relators – sue as “partial assignees” of the government’s claims for alleged injuries to the government. The False Claims Act lawsuit against University of Phoenix was filed by two private plaintiffs in March 2003 in United States District Court for the Eastern District of California, Sacramento Division. The suit alleged University of Phoenix violated a federal statute and regulation stating that while recruiters may be compensated based in part on the number of students they enroll, it cannot be the sole factor for determining their compensation. After review of the lawsuit’s allegations and consultation with the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Justice declined to join in the litigation. In fact, in a brief submitted to the Ninth Circuit in connection with the case, the Justice Department expressed “the government’s strong support for the important work of proprietary institutions of higher education, like University of Phoenix, that are providing much-needed educational opportunities to people looking to advance their careers and to earn a better living for themselves and their families.” In September 2003, the plaintiffs filed a First Amended Complaint, followed by a Second Amended Complaint in March 2004. The Court twice dismissed this case, ultimately with prejudice, before it was reinstated by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in September 2006. About Apollo Group, Inc.

Apollo Group, Inc. is one of the world’s largest private education providers and has been in the education business for more than 35 years. The Company offers innovative and distinctive educational programs and services both online and on-campus at the high school, undergraduate, graduate and doctoral levels through its subsidiaries: University of Phoenix; Institute for Professional Development; College for Financial Planning; Western International University; Meritus University; Insight Schools and Apollo Global. The Company’s programs and services are provided in 40 states and the District of Columbia; Puerto Rico; Canada; Latin America; and Europe, as well as online throughout the world (data as of August 31, 2009).

For more information about Apollo Group and its subsidiaries, call 800-990-APOL or visit the Company’s website at www.apollogrp.edu . Forward-Looking Statement Statements in this press release that are not statement of historical fact are forward-looking statements, and are subject to the Safe Harbor provisions created by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on current information and expectations and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those projected in such statements due to various factors. For a discussion of the various factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected, please refer to the risk factors and other disclosures contained in Apollo Group’s previously filed Forms 10-K, Forms 10-Q and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Source: Apollo Group, Inc.

Apollo Group, Inc. Investor Relations Contacts: Allyson Pooley, 312-660-2025 allyson.pooley@apollogrp.edu  Jeremy Davis, 312-660-2071 jeremy.davis@apollogrp.edu  Media Contact: Sara Jones, 818-326-1871 sara.jones@apollogrp.edu

Milken-PennGSE Education Business Plan Competition

UPenns has asked ForProfitEDU.com  to post the following:

In a knowledge economy, nothing is more important than people being able to maximize their potential.  And yet, collectively we have not figured out how to reach every person – regardless of where they are intellectually, emotionally, financially, and geographically – to help them realize their potential.  Effective learning is important for individual learners, their families, their employers, their communities and their countries.  There is an urgent need to find ways to reach and educate every person.

Education – from toddlers through baby boomers – is also big business in the United States. Depending on how one counts it, education mirrors healthcare in terms of spending or falls just below it. The United States is the largest exporter of education in the world, and education is our country’s fifth largest export.  By some accounts we have the most robust system of higher education in this country, a rich diversity of K-12 education, innovative pre-K and educational entertainment industries, and over 50% of adult Americans learning on the job on any given day.

Despite the size and import of learning, we have immense challenges; many hold out the hope of entrepreneurship to help solve some of these challenges. That said, until now there hasn’t been a single education business plan competition in the world and while entrepreneurship in bio tech, software, engineering and medicine is quite robust with clusters of start ups surrounding some of the world’s great universities, nothing similar exists in education.

To address this issue, the Milken Family Foundation and Penn have come together to be a joint catalyst for innovation in education, to help “create a space” for education entrepreneurs.  To begin this process, we have put together a business plan competition and we hope –if you have an idea to change the world, that you will enter the competition.

Why Penn? Since its founding by Ben Franklin, Penn has prided itself on its ability to combine theory and practice. We have the country’s first school of medicine and school of business.  At PennGSE, this spirit has manifested itself in a rich array of entrepreneurial activities all designed to foster change in education. Our faculty, staff, and students are all committed to the teleology of change and this competition is just one manifestation of a broad and aggressive agenda – framed by real world needs and sound theory and research.

Why Milken? The Milken family – who are Penn graduates – embody the Franklin spirit and through Knowledge Universe have demonstrated successful educational entrepreneurship – from pre-K services through college education for working adults. And in their philanthropic activities, the Milken family have made education – particularly innovation in education – a cornerstone of their work.

We hope that you will enter the competition, and look forward to hearing your ideas.

Visit: http://www.gse.upenn.edu/entrepreneurcomp/

Good luck!


Gregory Milken

Doug Lynch

Professional Academic Society to Offer Graduate Credit by University of St. Thomas for Adjunct Faculty Certification Program

CHICAGO, Ill., August 10, 2009 — SoCAFE, The Society of Certified Adjunct Faculty Educators, announced today that the organization’s certification program for part-time college and university faculty would now be available for graduate credit by the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN.

Completion of the certification course, entitled “Core Competencies of College Teaching” (CTED 672), will earn three graduate hours of credit and award the Certified Adjunct Faculty Educator (C.A.F.E.) designation.

“We’re gratified by the confidence St. Thomas University has shown in the quality of our certification program by offering it for graduate credit. This may be an excellent time for K-12 teachers to consider registering for this course, given the widespread lay-offs of public school teachers around the country,” said Dr. Rochelle Santopoalo, President of SoCAFE.

SoCAFE is the first organization in the United States to provide a portable, national credential for adjunct faculty in American colleges and universities.

Dr. Santopoalo also stated that “while the number of opportunities for K-12 teachers is currently in decline, according to the 2008-2009 edition of U.S. Department of Labor Handbook, the number of college and university teaching jobs is expected to grow by 23 percent between 2006 and 2016 – much faster than the average for all occupations.”

Founded in 1885, the University of St. Thomas is the largest private university in Minnesota. St. Thomas offers bachelor’s degrees in over 85 major fields of study and more than 45 graduate degree programs including master’s, education specialist, juris doctor and doctorates. (University of St. Thomas website: www.stthomas.edu/education/ce).

For more information on the organization visit: http://www.socafe.org.

All trademarks and service marks are the property of The Society of Certified Adjunct Faculty Educators.

August search volume still strong, but not as expected

August search volume was strong, but it did not exceed expectations.  August, which for the last 4 years was the strongest volume month YTD did not deliver on that expectation.  While the volume was still strong  as for year over year growth, it did not top the previous months of 2009.  August usually tops Jan thru July as it has for the last 4 years.

BMO Back to School Conference..dont miss it!

Senior Research Analyst Jeff Silber will lead this annual investor conference, showcasing leading companies in the for-profit education industry.  It’s a whose who in ForProfit EDU, in NYC Sept. 17th

click here to register: http://www.bmocm.com/conferences/2009backtoschool/default.aspx

House Committee on Education and Labor passed The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act

The House Committee on Education and Labor passed The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (SAFRA) of 2009, H.R. 3221, this included the increase of the 90/10 rule to three years.

Maybe all of the fear mongers hovering over the industry should start to realize there is lots of good and that while some minor changes may come down, there is not much likelihood that any major overhaul will occur.

June search volume strong, just not as strong as May

Finally some sense of reality, nothing can go up & up & up without ever settling down.  June search volume for edu terms remains very strong, but for the first time this year did not top the previous months activity.  Still, very strong signs of continued growth for the sector as compared to year over year trends.  It will be interesting to see August’s volume, as August is generally one of the strong turnaround months when dealing with the slower summer seasonality of edu lead volume in normal times that is…

June Search Volume

Search volume continues to buck seasonality trend

April 2009 search volume suggested a unique break from the tradition of seasonality of consumer demand in the education sector.  April traditionally starts the downtrend of demand that would generally continue downward and not pick up until August.  But this year 2009 April bucked that trend!  After discussion with numerous people who follow the EDUmarket the common thought was that the current economic cycle has resulted in a continued increase in consumer demand for a degree or continued degree enhancement.  Was this a new trend for demand?  Or, was April just an abberation?

Well if the May results have any indication, it looks like a new trend and continued demand increase.  May proved to be yet another exceptional month for EDU search Volume.  In fact, and in many of the key for profit EDU terms May has beat out all other months over the last year… 

The only exception to this trend is the school name keywords, here April still led the way with the greatest volume for most and January for some of the big names.