BLI Acquires Sherston, SEMERC and BlackCat

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BLI Group ("BLI"), is pleased to announce the acquisition of Sherston Publishing Group ("Sherston"), BlackCat Software and SEMERC from a Granada Learning associate business. Along with TAG Learning and Economatics Education, BLI has now evolved into a leading supplier of best of breed products into the education sector spanning ICT tools & content, STEM (science, technology, engineering & maths) and Special Needs.

BLI Group ("BLI"), is pleased to announce the acquisition of Sherston Publishing Group ("Sherston"), BlackCat Software and SEMERC from a Granada Learning associate business. Along with TAG Learning and Economatics Education, BLI has now evolved into a leading supplier of best of breed products into the education sector spanning ICT tools & content, STEM (science, technology, engineering & maths) and Special Needs.

Following the acquisition of Sherston and SEMERC, BLI is committed to developing a wide range of online resources underpinned by some of the most widely used software in schools. In addition, SEMERC'S range will be significantly expanded to give schools more choice on SEN solutions.

Sherston was established in 1983 by teachers and is now the UK's leading provider of educational software content for primary schools, with titles covering every part of the curriculum. Sherston have published hundreds of educational titles, including some of the UK's most popular software, such as Tizzy's Toybox and The Crystal Rain Forest. SEMERC is the leading UK provider of solutions for inclusion in education, offering SENCOs, teachers and parents support for learners of all ages with special educational needs. The acquisition also brings BlackCat Software, the respected supplier of educational ICT tools software for primary schools, into the BLI fold.

Commenting on the acquisition, Andrew Foyle, CEO of BLI, had this to say:

"We are extremely excited by the addition of Sherston, SEMERC and BlackCat to BLI alongside our acquisitions earlier in the year of TAG Learning and Economatics Education. Sherston's wide range of highly recognised popular titles will underpin our development of online content for schools for use on their Learning Platforms/VLE.

We have been really pleased with schools' early reception to Sherston's newly released online content channels Crystal ICT and humanities-focused Gogglebox. We look forward to being able to build on the success of these.

The acquisition of SEMERC opens up an opportunity for us to provide an enhanced specialist service to SENCOs, which we have not been able to do before. With a greater emphasis in this area, we aim to present schools with more choices on SEN solutions.

Finally, the BlackCat range complements the ICT tools-based focus of TAG Learning, making inroads into the primary sector. Schools are demanding tools to create content for Interactive Whiteboards and BlackCat's Activity Builder is well positioned to support this."

David Smith, Executive Chairman of the Granada Learning Group commented:

"We are pleased that we have found an appropriate home for the Sherston, SEMERC and Blackcat businesses. We are confident that they will prosper within BLI where they provide a natural complement to the existing TAG Learning and Economatics Education operations. Meanwhile the Granada Group will continue to focus upon building and developing its successful and market-leading assessment and performance business."

For more information about this acquisition and TAG Learning please do not hesitate to contact Reeza Awoodun on: 01474 537 886 ext 228 or r.awoodun @ taglearning.com

For more information about the Granada Learning Group please contact Rebecca Bremner on: 07092 872 720 or press @ granadalearning.com

Notes to editors:

About BLI Group - BLI Group ("BLI"), since its formation in 2007, has quickly grown to become a leading supplier of educational products into schools in the UK and internationally. The group comprises long established and popular brands including TAG Learning for ICT tools, Economatics Education for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths), Sherston Publishing Group for ICT content, BlackCat for creative software tools and SEMERC for SEN resources and equipment.
TAG Developments, a specialist development subsidiary of BLI provides development services that are revolutionizing e-assessment and e-portfolios across all subject areas in schools, and includes the award winning MAPS e-portfolio system.

BLI's focus is on providing the most appropriate learning solutions for children, teachers and parents to empower learning and stimulate creativity.

About the Granada Learning Group - The Granada Learning Group is the UK's leading provider of educational assessments, online school improvement resources and training. It publishes an extensive portfolio of online and print-based tests for schools and education specialists, which assess children's progress in literacy, ability and numeracy and identify a broad spectrum of special educational needs. The company's range of innovative, screen-based tools helps reduce the increasing burden of administration within education and support whole-school improvement to help schools work efficiently and effectively to meet their pupils' needs. Its training division provides high quality professional development for schools and health authorities, either in-house or at external training centres.

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Reeza Awoodun
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