Aspen Group, Inc. Announces Fourth Quarter Fiscal Year 2021 Quarterly Enrollments Increased by 23% to 2,182 New Students; Bookings Grew by 21% to $32.2 Million
Unrestricted Cash and Cash Equivalents of $8.5 Million at year-end Fiscal 2021 with Total Liquidity of $13.5 Million including the Undrawn $5.0 Million Credit Facility
Company to Report Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2021 Results on July 13, 2021
NEW YORK, May 18, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aspen Group, Inc. ("Aspen Group" or "AGI") (Nasdaq: ASPU), an education technology holding company, today announced that for the fourth-quarter fiscal year 2021, ending April 30, 2021, new student enrollments increased by 23% year-over-year to 2,182. Aspen Group's rising enrollment in the higher LTV USU MSN-Family Nurse Practitioner ("FNP") degree program and the Aspen University ("AU") Doctoral unit lifted bookings in the quarter, which increased 21% year-over-year to $32.2 million. Total nursing students comprised 87% of the active student body, up from 85% in the prior-year period. For the full-year fiscal 2021, bookings rose to $143.4 million from $111.3 million in the prior year.
"Fourth quarter enrollments finished strong as COVID-19 infection rates rapidly declined during the quarter. As in the prior quarter, we saw solid gains in the USU FNP and the AU online doctoral programs, despite the challenges these students were facing in their work environments," said Chairman & CEO Michael Mathews. "On the last quarter earnings call, I stated that we expected the RN student course starts to return to historical levels by the end of our fourth fiscal quarter. Course starts began improving in late February and returned to normal in March and April, ahead of expectations. Phoenix is a great market for our Aspen University Pre-licensure (PL)-BSN program, where we have experienced high demand for our unique and affordable program. For the second quarter in a row, we made a deliberate decision to avoid future waitlisting of students at our Phoenix campuses, which have full pipelines of first-year online students. This P-L business unit is expected to return to enrollment growth during the upcoming fiscal year given the anticipated enrollment ramp in our three recently launched PL-BSN campuses in Tampa, Austin, and Nashville."
"In the fourth quarter, we closely managed operating expenses, thereby materially reducing our cash burn from the level seen in the prior quarter. As a result, we ended the fiscal year with unrestricted cash and cash equivalents of $8.5 million and total liquidity of $13.5 million, including our undrawn $5 million credit facility. Our Phoenix pre-licensure campuses, launched in 2018 and 2019, delivered EBITDA of $1.8 million or a 52% margin in the prior quarter. This business unit is expected to continue to be our highest margin business unit for the foreseeable future and is why we continue to prioritize the majority of our growth capital to our pre-licensure business." stated Mathews.
Aspen University generated 1,593 new student enrollments in the fourth quarter, up 19% year-over-year, attributable to strength in its Doctoral unit. United States University ("USU") delivered 589 new student enrollments, a 36% increase year-over-year, primarily from FNP enrollments. Fourth quarter FNP enrollments grew nicely despite the work demands on the FNP students, who are nearly all full-time nursing professionals.
Table 1 reflects new student enrollments for the past five quarters:
|Table 1 - New Student Quarterly Enrollments|
|Q4 2020||Q1 2021||Q2 2021||Q3 2021||Q4 2021|
AGI's active degree-seeking student body, including Aspen University and USU, grew 21% year-over-year to 13,886 from 11,444. Aspen University's total active student body increased by 17% year-over-year to 11,117 from 9,487. On a year-over-year basis, USU's total active student body grew by 41% to 2,769 from 1,957. The chart below shows five quarters of active student body results.
An infographic accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/32c5c97d-cbae-4238-9430-144e1436d5fb
Aspen Group will provide a complete overview of the operating metrics for the fourth quarter on the upcoming earnings call. See below for the earnings conference call details.
Fiscal 2021 Fourth Quarter Earnings Conference Call Details:
Aspen Group will host a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter and full-year fiscal year 2021 financial results and business outlook on Tuesday, July 13, 2021, at 4:30 p.m. (ET). Aspen Group will issue a press release reporting results after the market closes on that day. The conference call can be accessed by dialing toll-free (844) 452-6823 (US) or (731) 256-5216 (international), passcode 4168399. After the call, a transcript of the audiocast will be available from the Company's website at ir.aspen.edu. There will also be a seven-day dial-in replay which can be accessed by dialing toll-free (855) 859-2056 (US) or (404) 537-3406 (international), passcode 4168399.
About Aspen Group, Inc.:
Aspen Group, Inc. is an education technology holding company that leverages its infrastructure and expertise to allow its two universities, Aspen University and United States University, to deliver on the vision of making college affordable again. For more information, visit www.aspu.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding our expected enrollment growth during the upcoming fiscal year. The words "believe," "may," "estimate," "continue," "anticipate," "intend," "should," "plan," "could," "target," "potential," "is likely," "will," "expect" and similar expressions, as they relate to us, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. We have based these forward-looking statements largely on our current expectations and projections about future events and financial trends that we believe may affect our financial condition, results of operations, business strategy and financial needs. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ from those in the forward-looking statements include the continued demand of nursing students for the new programs, student attrition, national and local economic factors including the substantial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy, and the competitive impact from the trend of public non-profit universities offering online education. Other risks are included in our filings with the SEC including our Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2020 and the prospectus supplement dated August 31, 2020. Any forward-looking statement made by us herein speaks only as of the date on which it is made. Factors or events that could cause our actual results to differ may emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict all of them. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as may be required by law.
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Released May 18, 2021