Justin Serrano has joined Weld North, an investment company backed by KKR, as an MD. Serrano will be responsible for identifying and managing investments in education. He was most recently President of Kaplan K12 and College Prep Programs at Kaplan Test Prep.
Weld North LLC, an investment company founded by former Kaplan, Inc. CEO Jonathan Grayer in partnership with Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR), announced today that it has hired Justin Serrano as Managing Director. With nearly 20 years of experience in the education industry, Serrano will be responsible for identifying and managing investments in education, one of Weld North’s core areas of concentration. Serrano has held a range of senior management positions throughout his career and joins Weld North from Kaplan, Inc., where he was most recently President of Kaplan K12 and College Prep Programs at Kaplan Test Prep.
“We are very excited that Justin is joining the Weld North team,” said Jonathan Grayer, Chairman and CEO, Weld North. “Justin is a real talent, a great operator and has significant experience at Kaplan in scaling profitable businesses in the retail education and K-12 sectors. I’ve known Justin for 17 years and I am confident that he will be a strong member of our management team and a fantastic leader of education businesses we buy.”
”I have always been inspired by Jonathan’s keen ability to find opportunities in education and growing businesses to scale. I look forward to realizing our shared vision of investing in exciting early stage businesses and creating long-term value,” said Mr. Serrano. “I’ve been fortunate to be a part of the growth story at Kaplan and will certainly bring what I’ve learned throughout my tenure there to bear in this new phase of my career.”
Serrano has deep experience in the K-12 education space, having spent his career to date at Kaplan working with K-12 students and schools, providing state test readiness programs and college preparation solutions. As President of Kaplan K-12 and College Prep, Serrano was responsible for having driven a new SAT/ACT strategy that propelled Kaplan to the leading market position in 2010. He also spearheaded the development of Kaplan’s Smart Track™, an adaptive software platform which analyzes individual student performance and prescribes custom learning plans. Previously, he was President of SCORE! Educational Centers, a subsidiary of Kaplan, where he led the development of groundbreaking software that enabled a completely integrated blended learning model featuring adaptive online instruction, automated teacher lesson plans, and real time parent reporting. Prior to his management role at SCORE!, Serrano oversaw Kaplan Test Prep’s graduate business where he led the integration of official test maker content into Kaplan’s courses.
Serrano holds a B.S. from Cornell University and received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
About Weld North
Weld North is an investment company concentrating on education, health and wellness, consumer services and marketing businesses. In partnership with KKR, a leading global investment firm, Weld North seeks to make control investments in businesses with high potential for long-term growth in cash flow. With strong and highly motivated management teams, the firm looks to accelerate growth through an obsessive focus on enhancing the customer experience, operational excellence, marketing expertise, and strategic and disciplined management.