Apollo Group (NASDAQ:APOL) recently reported its second quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.
Second Half Outlook
Peter Appert – Piper Jaffray: Hi, Brian I was temporarily distracted there at the very end, you would said in the last call — positive starts in the second half. Is that still the expectation?
Gregory W. Cappelli – Director, CEO, Apollo Group, Inc.; Chairman, Apollo Global, Inc.: Hi, Peter, this is Greg. We’re doing everything we can to return University of Phoenix back to growth as far as exactly the time we’re not commenting on that right now. We hope it sooner rather than later. We’re in the middle of repositioning the brand as you know and positioning ourselves with less reliance on affiliates and others. So what we’re very focused on is making sure that we get our most competitive product at the University of Phoenix into the marketplace as soon as possible and you’ll recall some of the comments that I made upfront in the call suggests some of the things that we’re doing to try to get there. So at this point, we’re focused less on the exact date and when we’ll return to growth in the start number and ensuring we hit our deadlines internally to get our best product offering for University of Phoenix into the marketplace. We are working very, very hard to do that. It doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen by the end of the year, but we’re just not focused on that date right now.
Peter Appert – Piper Jaffray: the second quarter’s start performance at least relative to Street expectations, I guess, was maybe a little bit weaker than anticipated. How did it compare with your expectations?
Gregory W. Cappelli – Director, CEO, Apollo Group, Inc.; Chairman, Apollo Global, Inc.: From our expectations, it’s probably a little weaker than we had gone into the quarter hoping for, some of that’s dependent on exactly the timing of spend, again a little bit less than we probably would’ve done. There is timing involved with that. We did see some good signs on the brand from third-party organizations that are measuring the effectiveness of what we’re trying to do with our brand, but not a ton different from our expectations. It’s a market that is difficult right now to deal with. We are doing that. We are just very focused internally on the University of Phoenix making sure we’ve engineered the best products for our students and trying to get that into the marketplace along with the changes that we are making to the brand. That’s everything from the education to careers initiative, the initiatives with our corporate partners, which are continue to grow, and we’re doing well with and growing in that area. There is a number of very good things are taking place, we’re just focused on execution in those areas.
Peter Appert – Piper Jaffray: Last thing, Greg, the change in the COO spot, do you envision a change in the definition of that role as a result?
Gregory W. Cappelli – Director, CEO, Apollo Group, Inc.; Chairman, Apollo Global, Inc.: We haven’t had a Chief Operating Officer. We have had a President, but I do envision Chief Operating Officer that’s instrumental helping me operationalize the strategy at the Apollo Group.
Peter Appert – Piper Jaffray: That’s the reason for the change?
Gregory W. Cappelli – Director, CEO, Apollo Group, Inc.; Chairman, Apollo Global, Inc.: No, well, the reason for the change is that Joe is stepping down from that position. He’s been in it a number of years and elected to take on a new position, but we’re excited for him in that role and also excited to be bringing on capability in the that I think will be helpful to us…