Globally, demand for student placements has increased by 53% compared to the first half of 2022, and the number of student placements also appears to be picking up, with applicants in Australia and New Zealand increasing by 71%.
Overall, English Language Testing revenue for the first six months of 2023 increased 10% to $285.4 million, Student Internships Worldwide to $172.8 million from $106.2 million, and English Language Teaching from $8.7 million USD to USD 15.7 million.
Digital marketing and events revenue increased to $26.5 million from $23.8 million.
“While all our target countries performed well, the reopening of Australia’s borders at the end of 2021 produced a strong recovery, indicating Australia’s underlying attractiveness as a study destination,” commented IDP CEO Tennealle O’Shaugnessy.
“As we continue our focus on improving our customer experience, during this period IELTS partners introduced IELTS Online in more than 40 countries and expanded our network of physical global test centers,” added O’Shaughnessy.
IDP acquired India’s IELTS business in 2019 from the British Council for £130 million.
While volume growth led to an 11% increase in IELTS revenue, price increases set in the financial year from $266 million to $280 million also had an impact.
Most countries started to see pre-pandemic IELTS levels in FY22, with about 5% of test takers scoring, an increase of 1,019,100-200,000 from this time in 2022. Vietnam, Nigeria, Pakistan and Nepal saw particular growth.
Onshore online testing declined slightly in Canada and New Zealand, as well as in Australia, due to a variety of factors including but not limited to delays in visa processing and reopening.
“IELTS volumes in Australia and New Zealand have decreased slightly as demand is constrained by the number of mainland candidates needing the test to obtain a new visa,” the report said.
Canada overall saw a 22% increase with “supply-side constraints,” including delays in processing visas, impacting student enrollment.
A 142% increase in student placements in Australia equated to 15,200 placements, a 128% increase from this time in 2022.
The report also included Intake Education’s two-month financial reports due to take over IDP in November 2022 – and revealed that a cash consideration of $71 million was paid for the company, as well as “additional contingent consideration of up to $20.2 million” paid to the first anniversary of the takeover.
General sales for the half-year show net profit after tax increased to $84.4m – a 59% increase on this time last year. Overall revenue growth of 26% resulted in a value of around $502 million.
When segmented geographically, Asia emerged as the dominant growth player with 30% year-on-year revenue growth – explosive revenue growth from Cambodia by 89% and Nepal by 183%. Vietnam also grew in sales by 98%, as did India with a smaller but still encouraging volume growth of 25%.
In the same segment, Australasia grew by 10%, mainly due to this surge in student placements. Australia’s earnings before interest and tax rose 4% – which the report said was a result of lower revenue growth than cost growth.
“Reopening of Australian borders in late 2021 sparks strong recovery”
English language courses have seen a 65% increase compared to last year, with more than 44,700 courses sold – schools in Cambodia and Vietnam returning to campus teaching led to an 80% increase in revenue in the region, including despite some “social distancing restrictions limiting class size capacity”.
“Vietnam [ELT] revenues are up 98% but remain well below pre-pandemic revenues,” the report continued. Dividends paid to shareholders also increased by 55%.