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Laureate Education With Clinton Ties Swings To Sharp Loss

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Laureate Education, a for-profit education company with close ties to the Clinton family, suddenly swung to a dramatic third quarter loss of $103 million, a stark contrast to $81 million dollars in positive earnings it reported in the third quarter of 2016, the Daily Caller News Foundation has learned.

The loss was posted by the company on its Form 10-Q that outlines quarterly earnings and losses.

The $103 million loss was most dramatic in its earnings per share. The company enjoyed a positive earnings per share of 66 cent in 2016. The company’s earning per share today is $1.02 loss per share.

Illustrating a potentially fragile financial state, the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) notified Laureate on Oct. 12 the company faced a “failure to meet standards of financial responsibility for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2016,” according to the 10-Q.

A failure to meet financial responsibility means a company has a “failing financial responsibility composite score” devised on a scale by DOE, Section 498(c) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, says. The determination means the federal department did not deem Laureate financially responsible.

The company raised $137,000 in new letters of credit winning “provisional” certification from DOE, according to its 10-Q.

After going public in February, four of its top directors announced their resignations including Laureate founder Doug Becker who was the company’s CEO.

Laureate is the second company with ties to the Clintons that is running into financial trouble. Earlier this year Joule Unlimited, where John Podesta once served on its board, closed doors. Podesta was the national campaign chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

The entire year hasn’t been good for Laureate. For the last nine months of 2017 the company suffered a loss of $106 million, according to the 10-Q. The firm enjoyed positive earnings of $327 million in the first nine months of 2016.

The basic and diluted earnings per share went from a positive $2.50 in 2016 to a loss of $1.77 in 2017.

The company has been tied to the Clinton Foundation and to former President Bill Clinton and has operated as a “pay-to-play” company. Over a five year period, Laureate paid Clinton $17.6 million to serve as its part-time “honorary chancellor.” Laureate in turn donated between $1 to $5 million to the Clinton Foundation.

When Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, the World Bank gave Laureate $200 million in investment funds. The United States is the largest donor to the bank and exercises great influence over it. The bank president at the time of the investment was Robert Zoellick, who later joined Laureate as a director when he left the World Bank.

Secretary Clinton’s U.S. Agency for International Development also gave an additional $17 million to another entity called the International Youth Foundation. The company’s president was Becker, who is the now CEO of Laureate.

Laureate became a publicly-held company again in February. It previously was a public company until 2007 when it went private, purchased by a consortium led by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., now known as KKR. The leverage buyout burdened the firm with $4 billion in debt. At the time, the consortium paid $60.50 per share.

Today, Laureate’s stock price plummeted, losing nearly 14 percent of its value on the NASDAQ. It settled at $11.61.

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