Indonesia: UOB Venture Management leads Series B funding in edtech startup Ruangguru

Indonesian education technology (edtech) startup Ruangguru has announced the completion of its Series B round led by UOB Venture Management, the investment arm of Singapore’s United Overseas Bank Group.

DEALSTREETASIA had reported on 15th June that Ruangguru has closed its Series B round and that it would announce the deal soon.

With this round of investment, UOB Venture Management has joined Venturra Capital and East Ventures as venture capital backers of Ruangguru. The edtech startup had raised a seven-digit Series A in December 2015 led by Venturra Capital, a VC firm focused on early-stage tech companies in Southeast Asia. East Ventures had led its seed round in 2014.

Seah Kian Wee, Managing Director and CEO, UOB Venture Management, said, “We believe that Ruangguru can be a game changer given the large-scale adoption of its learning management system and the potential of its products for the Indonesian education sector.” UOB Venture Management manages third-party private equity funds in excess of S$1 billion and focuses on growth companies in ASEAN and China.

Established in 2014, Ruangguru focuses on providing services across a wide range of education verticals. It offers its own learning management system targeted at elementary, middle, and high school students in Indonesia. Ruangguru also offers learning video subscriptions, private tutoring marketplace, on-demand in-app tutoring services, online exam simulation and others.

With the latest funding, Ruangguru plans to  strengthen its team in the areas of educational content, technology, marketing and operations, and deepen its product adoption in Indonesia. The company will also continue to explore ways to achieve personalized education services through machine learning, and to utilize the massive wealth of academic data that it possesses.

Ruangguru currently counts 3 million users nationally ranging from students in grade 1 to 12 across. In the last one year, the company secured partnerships with 27 (out of 34) provincial governments and more than 300 city and regency governments in Indonesia. These partnerships enable students in these areas to access Ruangguru’s learning management system, which includes high quality question banks, classroom management and exam simulations.

To complement the formal K12 education, Ruangguru offers a range of supplemental education services outside of school, including RuangBelajar, an integrated learning video subscription service, RuangLes, a private tutoring marketplace, RuangLesOnline, and on-demand tutoring service, and Ruangguru Digital Bootcamp, a social learning education solution for group-based distance learning.Another strategic partnerships forged during the last year is itspartnership with LINE, where Ruangguru and LINE co-launched LINE Academy, now boasting closeto 3.2 million members within 6 months of launch. Within the last three months, over 1.5 million students benefited through taking simulated online national examinations (Ujian Nasional) onRuangguru through LINE Academy.

“We believe that technology is key for us to both leapfrog our national educational attainment, and to ensure that all kids, no matter where they are and their economic status, have access to the same high quality educational content,” said Belva Devara, co-founder and CEO of Ruangguru.

With significant quality gaps in education systems across Asia, startups in the region have an opportunity to truly disrupt the space using technology. Finding a business model that works could be challenging though. Industry observers believe that education has ample opportunity, even though business models are unclear.

Also Read: Exclusive: Indonesian edtech startup Ruangguru closes Series B

Edtech startup Byju’s raises $30m from Verlinvest

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.