Apple Gains on Education Purchase

Apple Computer (Nasdaq: AAPL) rose 63 U.S.cents to $21.06 in morning trading Thursday after the Cupertino,California-based computer maker said it will buy PowerSchool, a Web-basededucational company, for $62 million in stock.

Privately held PowerSchool makes student information systems for schools andschool districts serving kindergarten through 12th grade. The company’sproducts are being used by some 2,000 schools across the United States to helpadministrators and teachers manage students’ records and let parents tracktheir children’s progress, Apple said.

Apple chief executive officer Steve Jobs said the acquisition reflectsApple’s emphasis on using computers to bolster classroom learning.”We are now expanding thatmission to include helping schools run more effectively,” Jobs said.

PowerSchool, based in Folsom, California, has 160 employees, according toApple.

Deal Awaits Approval

The acquisition is subject to approval by regulators and Apple shareholders.

Apple’s latest quarterly report, for the quarter ended in December, showedthe company had its first loss inthree years as computer sales plunged. The company lost $195 million,or 58 cents per share, compared with net income of $183 million, or 51cents, in the year-earlier quarter. Executives have said they expect a smallprofit for the current quarter, ending in March.

Apple executives in January were also upbeat about educational sales despitea shakeup in the division. Educational sales in the last quarter were saidto be even with the year-earlier period.

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