Chinese online education provider Codemao nets $57m Series C round

Codemao, a Chinese online education platform that offers coding classes to kids, announced on Monday that it has secured 400 million yuan ($57 million) in a Series C round of financing led by the Russia-China Investment Fund.

The round was joined by Hillhouse Capital; Asia-focused private equity firm SAIF Partners; Everbright New Economy USD Fund, a $483-million investment platform of Hong Kong-based financial services company China Everbright Limited; and Chinese state-owned Guangdong Technology Financial Group.

Codemao’s existing shareholders, including Chinese internet-focused venture capital firm Crystal Stream, Beijing-based mobile apps developer Cheetah Mobile, and China’s GreenPine Capital Partners, also participated in the investment.

Startups providing programming classes continued to rake in capital in 2018 despite an overall economic slowdown. Nearly $116 million was poured into this track across 33 deals, according to the Blue Paper of Education 2018, valuing the market at about $580 million.

The increasing enthusiasm for coding education in China comes as the country moves to become an artificial intelligence (AI) powerhouse by promoting the development of domestic high-tech industries including robotics, aerospace, smart manufacturing, and autonomous vehicles.

China’s State Council issued a statement in July 2017, recommending AI curriculum development in primary and secondary schools. In 2018, a pilot project in eastern China’s coastal province of Zhejiang included coding – the computer language used to build software, websites and apps – as part of college entrance examinations.

Codemao, founded in March 2015 and operated by Shenzhen Dianmao Technology Limited, delivers online coding education to 31.47 million students and 11,500 public schools across 23 cities, provinces and autonomous regions in China.

The company has booked over 200 million yuan ($28 million) in corporate income in the first three quarters in 2019, according to a statement.

Russia-China Investment Fund is a private equity vehicle established by sovereign wealth funds in China and Russia in June 2012 to promote the economic cooperation between the two countries. The investment platform, with $2 billion in assets under management (AUM), injects 70 per cent of its capital into companies in Russia and 30 per cent into Chinese firms.

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.