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UpGrad, the edtech platform founded by entrepreneur Ronnie Screwvala, on Monday said it has raised $120 million from Singapore’s Temasek in its first external funding since it was founded six years ago.

The Mumbai-based firm, which offers online courses in the higher education space, will utilize the funds to expand outside India and acquire smaller firms. upGrad has broken even and reported a revenue of 1,200 crore in 2020-21. The startup aims to scale up operations and eyes $2-billion revenue by 2026.

“upGrad plans to use the fresh capital to further strengthen its team, scale global market operations, bolster its technology and product capabilities, pursue M&A opportunities, expand graduate and post-graduate degree portfolio in India, and scale up operations to achieve its $2 billion revenue goal by 2026," the company said.

upGrad, which was co-founded by Screwvala, Mayank Kumar and Phalgun Kompalli, offers job-linked online degrees, diplomas and certificate courses in collaboration with top Indian and global universities. It offers over 100 courses and has a collaboration with Michigan State University (US), Liverpool John Moores University (UK), Deakin Business School (Australia), Duke Corporate Education (US), Swiss School of Business Management, (Geneva), Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode, among others.

“This capital will fuel our commitment towards global expansion, and deeper India penetration, as we march forward with our goal of making India the teaching capital of the world," the co-founders said in a joint statement.

Credit Suisse was the sole financial adviser to upGrad, and Rajaram Legal was the legal adviser.

Online education has picked up in India and worldwide last year because of the covid-19 disruptions. This has given a fillip to edtech players both in the mainstream and ancillary education space, including upGrad, which doubled revenue last year. The startup also claimed that it garnered 1 million learners in over 50 countries. Earlier this month, it said that the target is 25% revenue growth in the April-June quarter of 2021-22.

Prospects for India’s online education market brightened after the covid-19 disruptions, and startups such as upGrad and Byju’s have seen their valuations skyrocket.

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