Byju’s pulls in $200m from Tiger Global at striking $8b valuation

Byju’s founder Byju Raveendran. Photo: Mint

Indian edtech company Byju’s, operated by Bengaluru-based Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd, has raised $200 million funding from New York-based investment firm Tiger Global at a striking $8 billion valuation, said a media report citing sources.

Going forward, Byju’s is also likely to provide exits to some of the early backers via $100-$200 million worth secondary transactions.

According to a report in The Economic Times, Tiger Global and Byju’s have been in funding talks for the past few months. Byju’s has reportedly confirmed the transaction but has not divulged financial details.

Byju’s was valued at $5.5 billion when it raised $150 million in a funding round led by Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) in July last year. The round had also seen participation of Owl Ventures, an education technology investor.

The sharp jump in valuation is also being attributed to Byju’s exponential growth and entry into the US market. It acquired US-based learning platform Osmo for $120 million early last year as part of an aggressive international expansion plan. It reportedly also plans to launch products in other English speaking markets like the UK and Australia.

The newly raised capital will help Byju’s scale business and also tap some of the overseas markets. Its founder, Byju Raveendran has, in the past, also expressed intent to list the company on the bourses in the next 2-3 years.

Launched in 2015, Byju’s offers engaging and effective learning programs for students in classes 4-12 (K-12) and competitive exams like JEE, NEET, CAT, IAS, GRE and GMAT. The company claims to have 40 million registered users on its platform.

In December 2018, Byju’s had raised $540 million led by Naspers Ltd, with participation from the likes of Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and General Atlantic. The round had valued the Bengaluru-based firm at around $3.6 billion. At that time, Sequoia Capital was reported to have sold its 7 per cent stake in Byju’s for $185-190 million.

Until now, the company has raised about $971 million across rounds, according to Tracxn. Other investors in the Indian company include Verlinvest, Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Aarin Capital among others.

The company’s net loss narrowed to Rs14.91 crore for the financial year ended March 2019, compared to Rs37.19 crore losses reported in the same period a year ago. Its revenues of stood at Rs1,306 crore in FY19 compared with Rs 471.18 crore in FY18. The company claims to have turned profitable in June 2018 after achieving $14.3 million in monthly revenue.

Meanwhile, 2019 was a blockbuster year for Tiger Global in terms of venture funding. The investment firm made over 20 investments last year. Tiger ramped up its investments significantly after exiting Flipkart in August 2018, ending a three-year hiatus.

 

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.

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.