Indian edtech giant Byju’s onboards new investors at $11.1b valuation

Byju’s founder Byju Raveendran. Photo: Mint

Online education startup Byju’s on Tuesday said BlackRock, Sands Capital and Alkeon Capital have joined as new investors, as part of the ongoing $500-million fundraising round.

Earlier this month, Byju’s raised funds from a group of investors, including private equity firm Silver Lake Partners along with existing investors General Atlantic, Owl Ventures and Tiger Global at a valuation of $10.8 billion.

The valuation of the edtech startup is now at $11.1 billion, said a person familiar with the matter.

“We are excited to welcome Blackrock, Sands Capital and Alkeon as our partners. As we continue to create engaging and personalised learning solutions, partnerships like these reaffirm our commitment to build and transform the global learning landscape through technology, innovation and quality pedagogy. Continued support from our existing investors is a testament of their confidence in us and our mission,” said Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO.

Last month, Byju’s acquired WhiteHat Jr., a Mumbai-based coding platform to expand their product offerings and reach across markets. With coding fast emerging as a key skill for the future, this integration will also accelerate the firm’s international expansion plans.

The company, named after its founder Byju Raveendran, has raised around $1 billion since January, reflecting the surge in investor interest in Indian edtech startups as remote learning replaced classrooms amid the lockdown. Companies such as Byju’s are benefiting from the readiness of Indian middle-class families to spend a big chunk of their income on education and tutoring to give their children an edge amid rampant unemployment.

Byju’s was valued at around $8 billion in January when it raised $200 million in equity funding from New York-based hedge fund Tiger Global Management. That round had elevated Byju’s valuation by 45%. Since then, Byju’s valuation has increased by a further 35%. It had turned into a unicorn in late 2017 when it raised money from a group of investors, led by China’s Tencent.

This article was first published on livemint.com.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.