Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 21:24 EDT

The McGraw-Hill Companies Announces New Initiatives to Help the Chinese City of Kunshan to Drive Economic Growth and Further Enhance its BPO Capabilities

November 13, 2009

NEW YORK, Nov. 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP), a global leader in education solutions, financial services, and business information, today announced it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Chinese city of Kunshan and Ambow Education to help Kunshan increase its global competitiveness as a Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) center.

The MOU covers three initiatives designed to help Kunshan drive continued economic growth:

  • McGraw-Hill’s J.D. Power and Associates, the world’s best known marketing information service provider, will work closely with Ambow Education on an assessment of Kunshan’s competitiveness and capabilities through a first-of-its-kind Service Outsourcing Readiness Index. Kunshan will use the analysis to advance its competitiveness as a BPO center.
  • McGraw-Hill Education is in discussions with Ambow about offering English Language Training programs in Kunshan that will help strengthen the competitiveness of the city’s workforce and enhance its ability to win services contracts from multinational companies.
  • McGraw-Hill, Kunshan and Ambow also will discuss hosting an outsourcing summit in the city where Kunshan can demonstrate its capabilities while simultaneously learning about best practices from around the world.

“As China continues its evolution to an innovation- and services-based economy, it is strengthening its commitment to giving its citizens the skills and resources they need to compete in today’s increasingly interconnected world,” said Harold McGraw III, chairman, president and chief executive officer of The McGraw-Hill Companies. “With our diverse portfolio of leading knowledge brands, McGraw-Hill is uniquely positioned to help cities such as Kunshan assess and enhance their capabilities so they can capitalize on the tremendous opportunities being presented by China’s increasing international engagement.”

J.D. Power’s new index will measure such factors as financial performance, customer satisfaction, competitiveness of infrastructure, and human resources. Ambow will be responsible for developing the human resources component of the index. The data and analysis provided by the study will help cities highlight their strengths, identify and address areas for improvement, and better market themselves to corporations. Serving more than 10 industries in 60 countries, J.D. Power has unparalleled experience in market information and customer satisfaction measurement. This global reach, coupled with its 10 years of experience in China, will provide the insights and benchmarks China’s BPO industry needs to expand its international influence.

McGraw-Hill Education, one of the largest education solutions providers in the world, plans to work with Ambow to develop enhanced, customized English Language Training courseware and training that include online and group activities focused on enhancing the English skills of service professionals to help them perform their jobs. McGraw-Hill has a longstanding commitment to helping adults around the world meet the English language demands of today’s global workforces. The company provides innovative, research-based academic programs and assessments that support the use of English in the workplace, including Interactions/Mosaic, McGraw-Hill’s leading English language series for adult learners, and CTB/McGraw-Hill’s TABE CLAS-E(TM) product, the leading English language proficiency assessment for adult learners around the world.

The Kunshan Huaqiao Economic Development Zone is located on the border between Shanghai Municipality and Jiangsu Province. As of April 2009, Kunshan had attracted more than 5,000 foreign-funded projects from 55 countries and regions and has 53 projects funded by 28 of the top 500 world enterprises.

Kunshan is one of the 20 cities designated by the Chinese government as BPO centers as part of its commitment to establishing the country’s service outsourcing sector as a new high-growth area. Earlier in the week, J.D. Power and Ambow signed an MOU with the city of Dalian to use the Service Outsourcing Readiness Index, and the companies are engaged in discussions about expanding the index to each of the 20 BPO centers. More than half of U.S.- and European-based multinational companies are reported to have outsourced their software development and various business processing functions to overseas BPO centers, and China is taking aggressive steps to narrow the gap with India in terms of being the leading BPO destination in Asia.

About Ambow Education:

Founded in 2000, Ambow Education is the leading provider of personalized education and training services in China. Ambow has education and training services to cater to every stage of life. Ambow Learning Centers are located throughout China, offering after-school tutoring programs, university entrance exam preparation, job-readiness training and corporate training. With its highly-effective ‘learning engine’ technology and responsive business model, Ambow has consistently set the standards of excellence to which others aspire in the personalized education services sector in China. A pioneer in the sector, Ambow remains its leading technological innovator, as well as the acknowledged trend-setter in the delivery of effective teaching and learning practices. With Ambow, students and professionals can create the career path and future they desire.

About J.D. Power and Associates:

Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services company operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, Web intelligence and customer satisfaction. The company’s quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

About McGraw-Hill Education:

McGraw-Hill Education, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies, is a leading global provider of print and digital instructional, assessment and reference solutions that empower professionals and students of all ages. McGraw-Hill Education has offices in 33 countries and publishes in more than 65 languages. Additional information is available at MHEducation.com.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies:

Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies is a leading global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial services, business intelligence and education markets through leading brands such as Standard & Poor’s, McGraw-Hill Education, Platts, Capital IQ, J.D. Power and Associates, McGraw-Hill Construction and Aviation Week. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries. Sales in 2008 were $6.4 billion. Additional information is available at www.mcgraw-hill.com.

Investor Relations: http://www.mcgraw-hill.com/investor_relations

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Release issued: November 13, 2009

SOURCE The McGraw-Hill Companies

Source: newswire