Indian educational technology company, Byju, has secured $300 million in new funding round, valuing the startup at $18 billion. The investment was led by Oxshott Capital Partners and had the participation of other investors including XN Exponent, Edelweiss, Verition Master Fund, IIFL, and Time Capital Advisors.
The new funding is part of a larger round of new investment, which is likely to propel Byju’s valuation above $21 billion, as the edtech giant focuses on expanding its international business and strongly explores merger and acquisition opportunities, and it comes at a time when Byju is considering going public. In an interview, last month, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Byju, Byju Raveendran, confirmed that an “IPO was on the cards.” Reportedly, the company is already in talks with bankers about potentially filing for an initial public offering next year, and some bankers have given the startup a valuation of up to $50 billion if it goes public next year.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Byju has raised over $1.8 billion and a major portion of the firm’s recent capital raisings has been channelled into the acquisition of firms. Earlier this year, it bought Aakash, one of the largest coaching institutes for high-school students with over 200 centres, for nearly $1 billion. It has also purchased Great Learning, and U.S.-based Epic, among others, for over $1 billion in cash and stock deals. Last month, the startup announced that it had acquired kids coding platform Tynker for $200 million. According to Chief Executive Byju Raveendran, the acquisitions are helping Byju tap into international markets in more meaningful ways, and expand its offerings.
Launched in 2015, Byju provides an online platform for effective learning. The company leverages technology to merge best practices like the use of videos, engaging content and quizzes with the best teachers so that every child across the globe has access to the best learning experiences. Per its website, every detail of a student’s journey is planned and executed at the deepest level with subject matter experts, teachers and tools like videos, interactive animations, and quizzes. Byju’s also prepares students pursuing undergraduate and graduate-level courses, and in recent years it has broadened its catalogue to serve all school-going students.
Byju, like several other online learning startups, including Unacademy and Vedantu, experienced significant growth during the pandemic, as many parents and students turned to online learning due to the lockdown of schools.