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For-profit college owner buys McGraw-Hill’s textbook division

In a surprise $2.5 billion cash and debt deal expected to be final by the early part of 2013, the owner of one of the nation’s largest for-profit education providers will purchase McGraw-Hill Education’s digital and traditional textbook business.

After Apollo Global Management completes the deal, McGraw-Hill will be renamed McGraw Hill Financial and will focus solely on its major brands such as J.D. Power and AssociatesStandard & Poor’s, and S&P Capital IQ. McGraw-Hill representatives say the company is confident that this refocus will prove profitable for the company’s shareholders.

Apollo Global Management is a joint venture between the Apollo Group and the Carlyle Group, formed to manage Apollo Group subsidiaries. The University of Phoenix is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Apollo Group, which now will control textbooks and publishing for a massive number of colleges and universities—which are direct competitors for students with the University of Phoenix.

The move could significantly affect the education market, analysts said.

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