Indonesian edtech startup Zenius raises $20m led by Northstar Group

Photo: Zenius website

Jakarta-based edtech platform Zenius Education on Wednesday announced that it has secured $20 million in a Series A funding round led by Singapore-based private equity firm Northstar Group.

The announcement confirmed reports since late last year that the company was looking to raise $20 million in the funding round, which is counted as its first external financing to date.

Established in 2004, Zenius Education offers learning solutions based on understanding concepts and scientific reasoning. The startup, which offers products under its platform Zenius.net, offers 8,000 learning videos and thousands of practice quizzes for elementary to high school students.

Venture capital firms Kinesys Group and BeeNext also participated in the round.

The fresh capital will be used to further accelerate business growth, develop the technology, and expand its services across Indonesia.

“We believe that with their combination of technology, strong talent, and sustainable social impact mission, Zenius would be able to make its mark on the education sector in Indonesia,” Northstar Group co-founder and managing partner Patrick Walujo said in a statement.

Zenius Education also appointed Rohan Monga as the firm’s CEO. Prior to joining Zenius, Monga served as the chief operating officer at ride-hailing unicorn Gojek since 2015. He has over 10 years of experience in the consumer internet industry. He has previously worked at e-commerce giant Amazon and founded his own fintech firm.

Ed-tech startups have been transforming the way Indonesian students study and learn through interactive, accessible content, available on smartphones and other devices.

According to the Central Statistic Agency, Indonesia has a total of more than 45 million students enrolled in elementary to high school across the country in 2018, indicating a huge market potential for edtech startups.

Last year, ed-tech startup RuangGuru its $150-million Series C funding round co-led by global investment firms General Atlantic and GGV Capital, with participation from existing backers EV Growth, UOB Venture Management and a number of new investors.

Other ed-tech startups that have raised multiple funding rounds include HarukaEdu.

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.