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Business News/ Companies / Start-ups/  New investors value Byju’s at $11 billion

New investors value Byju’s at $11 billion

The rush of investments into the edtech startup comes amid a surge in demand for online teaching

Byju Raveendran, founder and chief executive of Byju’s. mintPremium
Byju Raveendran, founder and chief executive of Byju’s. mint

Online learning startup Byju’s said it has raised an undisclosed amount from three new investors BlackRock, Sands Capital and Alkeon Capital. The company is now valued at $11.1 billion, a person familiar with the matter said.

The fund-raising is part of the $500 million funding round that it completed earlier this month. The new valuation topped the previous $10.8 billion that the company was valued at when it raised funds from a clutch of investors, including private equity firm Silver Lake Partners, along with existing investors General Atlantic, Owl Ventures and Tiger Global.

The rush of investments into the edtech startup comes amid a surge in demand for online teaching after remote learning replaced physical classrooms following the announcement of the nationwide lockdown in end-March. The company, which teaches students through a mobile app, has added more than 25 million students on its platform since the lockdown. The app currently has more than 70 million registered students and 4.5 million paid subscribers.

Byju’s had made content on its learning app free for all in response to schools being shut due to the covid crisis and lockdowns. It also began an online tutoring programme, Byju’s Classes, to cater to after-school learning needs of students while starting learning modules in regional languages Hindi, Kannada, Bengali, Malayalam and Gujarati.

“We are excited to welcome BlackRock, Sands Capital and Alkeon as partners. As we continue to create engaging and personalized learning solutions, partnerships like these reaffirm our commitment to build and transform the global learning landscape through technology, innovation and quality pedagogy. Continued support from our existing investors is a testament of their confidence in us and our mission," Byju Raveendran, founder and chief executive of Byju’s said in a statement on Tuesday.

The firms has raised around $1 billion since January, including the latest tranche.

Sarvesh Kumar Sharma/Mint
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Sarvesh Kumar Sharma/Mint

The soaring interest from global investors has catapulted Byju’s into India’s second-most valuable startup after Paytm, also earning it the decacorn status—the handful of startups that are valued at more than $10 billion.

Byju’s was valued at around $8 billion in January when it raised $200 million in equity funding from New York-based hedge fund Tiger Global Management. That round had elevated Byju’s valuation by 45%. Since then, its valuation has climbed by a further 35%. It became a unicorn in late 2017 when it raised capital from a group of investors, led by China’s Tencent.

Last month, Byju’s acquired WhiteHat Jr in an all-cash deal worth $300 million. The deal marked Byju’s entry into the computer code training segment aimed at children.

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Madhurima Nandy
I am a part of the long story team at Mint, and write on real estate, infrastructure, e-commerce, urban issues among others. I have over 20 years of experience as a journalist. As a long-story writer, I tell stories behind the news to capture the larger picture through an analytical lens, with authenticity.
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Published: 24 Sep 2020, 06:27 AM IST
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