GL Ventures leads $265m Series C round in Chinese SaaS edtech firm EEO

Empower Education Online (EEO), a Chinese Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) provider in the edtech field, has secured $265 million in a Series C round of financing led by Hillhouse Capital’s venture capital unit GL Ventures, the lead investor announced on November 28.

Other investors included Chinese social media and gaming giant Tencent; global investment firm SIG; INCE Capital, an investment firm co-founded by JP Gan, ex-partner at Qiming Venture Partners; and Gaocheng Capital, which focuses on growth-stage PE deals in technological innovation and enterprise service.

Founded in September 2014, EEO provides the so-called online-merge-offline (OMO) interactive classroom product ClassIn, which enables functions like online homework management, interactive and shared e-blackboards, and online responders.

The Beijing-based firm partners with 60,000 schools and educational institutions globally. In China, the firm claims to have cooperation with about 70 per cent of the country’s educational institutions that generate an annual revenue of at least 100 million yuan ($15.2 million), including Beijing-based TAL Education Group and private education group New Oriental.

New Oriental had led EEO’s 100-million-yuan Series A+ round in March 2017. TAL Education Group and e-testing & assessment service ATA had participated in the round.

EEO currently serves 20 million monthly active users (MAUs) from 150 countries and regions.

“Today, interpersonal communication has developed to rely on coffee houses plus WeChat, like the future of education, which will also quickly shift towards an era of online plus offline classroom,” said Song Junbo, founder and CEO of EEO, in a statement.

“As EEO helps schools and institutions build their online capabilities, the company will continue to promote the digitisation of offline teaching scene.”

EEO had raised tens of millions of US dollars in a Series B round from INCE Capital in July.

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.