Info-tech

Edutech firm BYJU’s raises funds from Verlinvest

Venkatesh Ganesh Bengaluru | Updated on January 15, 2018

Eyes global foray, acquisitions

With another fresh round of funding, edutech company BYJU’s is planning to expand into international markets and is eyeing acquisitions.

The firm said it has received a fresh round of funding from Verlinvest, a Belgium-based fund which has invested in companies such as Sula Vineyards.

This round, which industry watchers say is a Series E round, will aid the company’s expansion into Europe and other geographies, and could help the edutech start-up make acquisitions.

Verlinvest runs a family investment office focussed on late-stage venture, private-equity investments, and is part of brewer company AB-InBev Group.

When contacted, BYJU’s did not comment on the quantum of fund raise, but industry watchers peg it in the range of ₹150 crore.

Frederic de Mevius, Chairman of the Board, Verlinvest said: “We believe online learning has great potential globally, and BYJU’s products address this with an innovative and compelling proposition.” Byju Raveendran, CEO, BYJU’s, said that in the past 18 months, the company has witnessed exponential growth in India. “While these numbers are very exciting, the fact that we are still reaching less than 1 per cent of the student population, shows the immense potential, and the impact we can create,” he said. In January, the company had acquired Bengaluru-based Vidyartha, a data-driven platform offering customised learning guidance to students, for an undisclosed sum.

BYJU’s last round of fund-raise was in December 2016. It had raised a $50-million fund infusion from International Finance Corporation. Ruchira Shukla, Regional Lead, South Asia, Venture Capital at IFC, had told BusinessLine that using deep tech in education can be disruptive and lead to superior learning outcomes.

Before IFC’s fund infusion, in March 2016, BYJU’s had raised $70 million, and also got $50-million funding from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s and wife Priscilla Chan’s philanthropic investment arm The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. With this quantum of fund-raise, the firm is valued at around $650 million.

Published on March 28, 2017

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