India: Mohandas Pai backs edtech startup Oust Labs; provides seed funding

Edtech startup Oust Labs, has raised an undisclosed seed round from T.V.Mohandas Pai, chairman of Manipal Global Education Services and Aarin Capital.

Founded by former chief marketing officer of InMobi, Shrikant Latkar, Oust Labs offers a gamified platform that helps students excel in Indian competitive exams. It has been running trials of its app in smaller cities of Karnataka since August last year. The company has presence in California, Bangalore, Belagavi and Pune.

“Our goal is to help students to qualify for a better college or job, irrespective of where they are studying right now,” said CEO Latkar.

Oust claims to have a total repository of 125,000 questions across various subjects including physics, chemistry and maths.  It also claims that over 7,000 student currently play their short 2-minute quizzes that consist of five questions on various subjects on their mobile devices.

The company advisors include Paulette Altmaier, former head of partnerships at Khan Academy, Gurmeet Lamba, VP of Engineering of Sentient Technologies (an artificial intelligence company) and Venkatesh Venkataraman, entrepreneur and architect who has worked at several startups and large companies including Cisco Systems and Netflix.

“While the challenge of delivering relevant and high—quality online content is being solved by a number of very promising ventures all over the world, there exists a larger fundamental challenge to engage and retain students’ attention on a constantly evolving paradigm of mobile and social,” said T.V. Mohandas Pai.

The former Infosys executive has invested in over three dozen young tech companies including online media company YourStory, peer-to-peer lending platform Faircent, and vernacular language-driven exam preparation venture OnlineTyari.com.

Also Read: India 2015: Mohandas Pai, Ratan Tata, Kunal Bahl among top angel investors

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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. 
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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.