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MUMBAI : India’s second-largest online tutoring platform Vedantu Innovations Pvt. Ltd, which turned unicorn last year, is set to enter global markets as the company gears up for an initial public offering (IPO) in 2023-24, its co-founder and chief executive officer Vamsi Krishna told VCCircle in an interaction.

Unicorns are private startups with a valuation of $1 billion or more. More than a decade old now, Vedantu will launch operations in West Asia by June. The Bengaluru-based edtech platform has plans to expand to at least one more geography in the near term. It could further expand to three-four newer overseas locations possibly in the South Asia and Commonwealth regions (near Western Europe), Krishna said.

Vedantu will be looking for an IPO in the next 18-24 months.

While Krishna did not divulge any financial detail regarding the global plans, he said if global operations start contributing about 10% to Vedantu’s revenue, the company will invest “heavily" to further expand international markets. Meanwhile, like its peers, Vedantu is also looking at acquisitions for its global foray as well as domestic expansion. “We are completely open and have been evaluating that option (acquisitions). It’s basically a build versus buy for us. If we are building something and we feel there is a team or a product that is already there, which we anyways have to do, then integrating that makes sense. We are open for that, we have not done anything till now, but we continue to evaluate...even within the country," said Krishna.

Co-founded by Krishna, Anand Prakash, Saurabh Saxena and Pulkit Jain in 2011, Vedantu has so far acquired two companies— Ahmedabad-based Pedagogy (operated by WeColab Edusystem Pvt Ltd) and Noida-based Instasolv (operated by Adinio Services Pvt Ltd)—for undisclosed amounts. Both the acquisitions were made in 2021, at a time when edtech companies in the country were on a buying spree.

As of last year, there were five new-age edtech unicorns that cumulatively acquired 21 companies, spending a total of about $3 billion, VCCircle reported.

Vedantu’s inorganic plans come against the backdrop of its recent large fund infusion. Last September, Vedantu joined the coveted unicorn club after raising $100 million in its Series E round from Singapore-based impact investor ABC World Asia and others. Its other investors include Tiger Global, Coatue Management, GGV Capital, WestBridge Capital, Legend Capital, and Omidyar Network, among others.

The strategy behind Vedantu’s acquisitions, Krishna said, is to penetrate deeper into the K-12 segment (kindergarten to 12th standard) by using the target companies’ technology to further develop products within their core space. “With our acquisitions, we’ve tried to develop even more inroads within the K-12 segment. Without going into more details, we are coming up with even more courses in the same segment which you will hear me talking about in the next few months," said Krishna.

Of the two acquisitions, Pedagogy and Instasolv, one is an automated doubt solving platform that is a very big use case in the K-12 segment, and the other is a platform where you get access to all major publications’ books, again which is also very strong in the same segment, Krishna added.

nikhil.patwardhan@livemint.com

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