Nova reinstated as the name of the chain of English-language schools

Jibun Mirai Associe Co., which took over bankrupt English-language school Nova, said it set up a wholly-owned subsidiary under that name to operate the chain of schools.

The company decided to keep the Nova name because it is a well-known brand and they have already been using it for class names and other purposes since the takeover. The new Nova, set up on Monday, is based in Tokyo.

Jibun Mirai Associe said that by officially reinstating the Nova business name, it hopes to create a strong impression of the brand’s revival. The company also said it changed its name to Nova Holdings Co. to take over management and administration of the schools.

Nova Holdings said it currently operates 336 schools with some 66,000 students.

Last November, the Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Nova founder Nozomu Sahashi against his conviction for embezzling 320 million yen from employee benefits funds, finalizing his two-year prison sentence.

Sahashi was found guilty of having transferred the sum accumulated with an entity in charge of the funds to a bank account of a Nova subsidiary in July 2007 to reimburse students who had signed contracts which they later canceled. Nova’s language teachers also filed a criminal complaint for their unpaid salaries, but Sahashi was not charged over the issue.

Sahashi launched English conversation classes in 1981 and established Nova in 1990. His company has grown to become one of Japan’s largest English-language school chains, with around 480,000 people taking Nova lessons at his apogee.

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