Monday, June 25, 2012
Travers Smith advises TSL Education on joint venture with American Federation of Teachers
A Travers Smith team led by Tom Purton advised the British publisher TSL Education Limited ("TSL") on a joint venture entered into with the American Federation of Teachers ("AFT"), one of the largest teaching unions in the US.
Travers Smith advised on the establishment of the 50/50 joint venture vehicle between TSL and AFT, which operates a new US website called sharemylesson.com. The website provides a platform for teachers to share teaching materials online, ranging from lesson plans to videos and assessments. Teachers will be able to download, rate, share and upload these materials at no charge. The website is based on tesconnect.com, an online platform created by TSL, which allows teachers to share resources online.
TSL is a privately owned private equity backed company with over 1.8 million registered online users in 196 countries. It is the largest online network of teachers in the world, which publishes the Times Education Supplement, amongst other publications.
The AFT is one of the largest teaching unions in the US. It was founded in 1916 and represents 1.5 million members in more than 3,000 local affiliates across the US.
Tom Purton, Head of Commercial, IP & Technology at Travers Smith commented, "This was a unique and challenging transaction, bringing together a UK-based commercial entity and US labor union to form a brand new joint venture business, which the parties hope and believe will be a significant development in US education."
Hughes Hubbard & Reed provided US legal advice to TSL and Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP acted for AFT.
The Travers Smith team also included tax partner Simon Skinner and commercial senior associate Ben Chivers.