Bright Horizons (NYSE: BFAM) is a United States–based child-care provider and is the largest provider of employer-sponsored child care. It also provides back-up child care and elder care, tuition program management, education advising, and student loan repayment programs. It is headquartered in Newton, Massachusetts.
Notable acquisitions since 2006 include College Coach, EdAssist Solutions, EdLink, the nursery operators Kidsunlimited and Asquith Court and the childcare group Teddies Nurseries, Sittercity, an online marketplace for family solutions, and GP Strategies.
In 1987, the first two Bright Horizons child care centers were opened at the Prudential Center in Boston and at One Kendall Square in Cambridge, both on the same day.
After acquiring Cornerstone West, Bright Horizons expanded to California in 1993.
Founders Roger Brown and Linda Mason were named “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young in 1996.
In 1997, the company conducts a successful IPO and goes public as BRHZ.
Bright Horizons and Corporate Family Solutions merged in 1998 to form Bright Horizons Family Solutions, and changed their NASDAQ ticker symbol from BRHZ to BFAM. The company is named to FORTUNE Magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies to Work for in America” for the first time, and would go on to make the list a total of 18 times between 1998 and 2019.
In 2000, the company moved its headquarters to Watertown, Massachusetts. That year, London-based Nurseryworks and Dublin-based Circle of Friends become part of the Bright Horizons family, making it a global company.
The 500th center opened in 2003 – the Child Care Center at Citibank Service Center in San Antonio, Texas.
Bright Horizons began offering center-based back-up child care in 1992 with the first standalone back-up child care center for Chase Manhattan Bank. In 2006, the Back-Up Care Advantage program was established to provide in-home back-up child, and elder care.
In 2006, college advising company College Coach was acquired by Bright Horizons. College Coach founder and CEO Stephen Kramer joins the Bright Horizons executive team. Kramer becomes CEO of Bright Horizons in 2018.
In 2000, Mary Ann Tocio was named president and chief operating officer of BH. She retired in July 2015 and remains on the Board of Directors. Today, the company’s internal training platform – Mary Ann Tocio University (MATU) – is named after her.
David Lissy served for 17 years as chief executive officer beginning in 2002. He became executive chairman in January 2018. During his tenure as CEO, he was responsible for the company’s international expansion.
In 2008, the company returned to its roots as a private company in partnership with Bain Capital.
In 2010, the company launched Tuition Advisory Services, an employer solution working with employers to take a more strategic approach to their tuition reimbursement programs.
In 2013, Bright Horizons went public for the second time on the New York Stock Exchange, with stock symbol BFAM