IFC proposes $20m investment in Learn Capital’s new emerging markets fund

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International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has proposed an investment of $20 million into the new emerging markets fund of edtech-focused venture capital firm Learn Capital.

Learn Capital’s portfolio companies in Asia include Tencent-backed online education startup Udemy Inc; Indian edtech startup Springboard; online learning startup Coursera, which counts India as its second-largest market after the US; job matching site Kalibrr; and VIPKid, a platform that brings the US educators and elementary children in China together.

In a disclosure, IFC said it will initially be the sole limited partner in Learn Capital Venture Partners EM, an emerging markets-focused investment vehicle that will co-invest with specified investment funds of the Silicon Valley-headquartered firm.

The EM fund will focus on qualified portfolio companies that meet agreed-upon criteria. The criteria specified that the companies should not be engaged in the ownership or operation of K-12 schools and should be domiciled in emerging markets.

IFC earlier froze investments in K-12 private, free-charging schools in response to concerns by external stakeholders about the impact of private schools on education quality and access.

“IFC will initially be the sole limited partner in the EM fund but both IFC and learn will seek to mobilise other like-minded investors, including DFIs (development finance institutions),” IFC said.

It added that the fund will increase the availability of capital for technology-driven startups engaged in education and skills development in emerging markets, including geographies with limited access to venture capital.

The fund will also improve access to efficient training, upskilling, and employability-related education services as well as increase the competitiveness of key markets through innovative market-creating solutions.

Learn Capital, founded in 2008, focuses exclusively on education technology (edtech) investments largely in emerging markets. It is raising $200-250 million for its fourth fund – Learn Capital Venture Partners IV.

IFC also invested $15 million in a parallel fund that will invest alongside the Learn Capital Venture Partners IV. It was also the anchor investor in the firm’s Fund III, a $150-million fund with a specified emerging market focus and mandate.

Learn Capital invests in learning content, platforms, and services. Its debut fund, Learn Capital Venture Partners I, raised $50 million in 2012.

 

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.