The world's largest international student placement company IDP Education (ASX: IEL) has reported record revenue of almost $1 billion for FY23, with growth in all market segments except the English language testing business in India due to weakened demand for migrations to Canada.
IDP's revenue was up 24 per cent at $982 million in a year that saw it increase the number of student placements by more than half to reach 84,600, and administer a record 1.93 million International English Language Testing System (IELTS) tests.
Growth for student placements in Australia outpaced the total business with 86 per cent revenue growth to $152 million, while IELTS testing growth was more modest at 7 per cent to reach $545.5 million.
These results helped lead to a 45 per cent lift in net profit after tax of $149.1 million, although in constant currency terms it was up 42 per cent.
"This strong performance reflects IDP’s position as a leader in the growing global education services sector," says IDP chief executive officer and managing director Tennealle O’Shannessy, who joined in February after previously leading Adore Beauty (ASX: ABY) and Seek's (ASX: SEK) Americas.
"This year, we helped more students and test takers than ever before as our customers realised their global ambitions for study, career and migration."
The group expanded its physical scale during the year with 46 offices added through both organic expansion and the $83 million acquisition of Taiwan-based Intake Education. The latter expanded its exposure to strategically important African markets such as Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya.
IDP Education also increased its digital footprint with more than 860,000 downloads of the IDP Live app and 816,000 downloads of its app IELTS by IDP, and it acquired The Ambassador Platform which connects prospective students with current or past students to provide a more complete picture of studying and living abroad.
"We continue to execute strongly on our long-term strategy, and it is delivering results," says O'Shannessy.
"We are focused on improving our customer experience, enhancing our deep human connections through technology, data and insights.
"Even with our increasing scale, we continue to strengthen our relationships with our customers, increasing our student net promoter score by four points over the previous year."
The CEO explains that the student placement strategy is focused on delivering 'differentiated customer experiences on an unmatched digital and physical scale'.
"We are doing this by leveraging our unique data assets to create products and services that allow us to both delight our customers and increase productivity," she says.
"This is demonstrated through the scaling of FastLane, which harnesses IDP’s global dataset and client relationships to enable students to receive real-time in-principle offers from leading institutions."
The record number of IELTS tests for IDP Education only represents 1 per cent growth, but a 6 per cent average increase in pricing led to much higher revenue growth. However, outside of India testing volumes and revenue grew by 18 per cent and 22 per cent respectively.
In contrast, revenue from IELTS in India fell 5 per cent during the year due to weakness in the Canada-bound test-taker market where sentiment towards Canada declined, after multiple periods of rising demand.
"Our English Language Testing business, IELTS, is the world’s most recognised, reliable and secure English language test, using both expert human examiners and digital technology for the best customer experience," says the O'Shannessy.
"We remain focused on leveraging our leading brand, extensive physical and digital distribution, and customer-led product innovation to enhance our leading position.
"Since joining IDP I’ve been impressed by the knowledge, expertise and passion that drives our employees to make a difference in the lives of our customers and help them realise global opportunities. I look forward to another great year ahead as we continue to deliver a compelling and differentiated offer to our customers."
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