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Ed tech startups have gained traction as schools remain shut because of the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo: iStockphoto)
Ed tech startups have gained traction as schools remain shut because of the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo: iStockphoto)

Unacademy acquires PrepLadder for $50 million

  • Unacademy raised $110 million from social networking giant Facebook and US private equity firm General Atlantic at a post-money valuation of $510 million

MUMBAI: Facebook-backed online learning platform Unacademy has acquired ed-tech startup PrepLadder for $50 million. The Chandigarh-based startup primarily provides preparatory help with medical entrance exams.

The acquisition highlights how ed-tech startups are favourites of investors in current times. In the first six months of 2020, venture capital investors pumped in $795 million in the segment compared with $108 million in the year-ago period.

This move will strengthen Unacademy’s presence in medical entrance examination category such as NEET PG and FMGE. As a part of its inorganic growth strategy, Unacademy recently acquired Kreatryx and took over the custodianship of CodeChef.

Started in 2016, PrepLadder specialises in medical examinations and provides access to education services and preparation material for exams such as NEET PG, AIIMS PG, NEET SS, and FMGE. Founded by Deepanshu Goyal, Vitul Goyal, and Sahil Goyal, the company claims to have over 85,000 active subscribers.

"As we strengthen our position as a market leader in the test prep market, bringing PrepLadder on board will play a strategic role for Unacademy in the medical entrance examinations category. PrepLadder is doing great work in its field and we hope they go into more markets and continue this work," said Gaurav Munjal, founder and CEO, Unacademy.

Deepanshu Goyal, co-Founder, PrepLadder said, "We are extremely happy to be a part of the largest learning platform in India. Unacademy and PrepLadder are working towards the common goal of making quality education accessible to all. We believe that the synergies between both products will truly create a mark in the industry."

In February, Unacademy raised $110 million from social networking giant Facebook and US private equity firm General Atlantic at a post-money valuation of $510 million.

Existing investors Sequoia India, Nexus Venture Partners, Steadview Capital and Blume Ventures also participated in the round, apart from investments by Flipkart chief executive Kalyan Krishnamurthy and Udaan cofounder Sujeet Kumar in their individual capacities.

In the last three months, Unacademy has recorded a 100% increase in its paid subscriber base given the emphasis on online learning. The average daily watch time across Unacademy platforms has also risen significantly, with monthly watch time minutes at an all-time high of over 1 billion.

Over 525,000 learners attempted various mock tests on the platform for competitive examinations such as UPSC, NEET-PG, and CAT among others during this period.

With schools shut because of the coronavirus pandemic, online learning platforms have stepped in to fill the gap - providing investors with robust prospects.

Ed tech funding has largely been led by Byju’s, now valued at $10.5 billion, after Tiger Global invested $200 million in the entity in January.

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