Naspers leads $30 mn Series C round for Brainly

Naspers leads $30 mn Series C round for Brainly
Photo Credit: Photo Credit: VCCircle
26 Jul, 2019

Peer-to-peer learning community Brainly has raised $30 million (Rs 207 crore at the current exchange rate) in a funding round led by existing investor Naspers Ventures. 

Runa Capital and Manta Ray also participated in the Series C round, Brainly said in an official announcement today.

The Poland-headquartered company will use the funds to expand the user base in India, which is one of its key markets, the statement added. 

Brainly is a crowd-sourced, classwork helper platform for high school students as well as parents. Students can post questions related to various subjects like math and science and get answers from peers or subject matter experts. 

"Our goal is to extend the access to academic help to every student in the world, including India, giving them the resources and the tools to succeed while inspiring collaborative learning,” Michal Borkowski, CEO of Brainly, said in the statement.  “We also plan to utilise these funds to expand our offerings for the Indian community of students, parents and teachers, by providing the platform to discuss and study in other local languages like Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali, Telugu, and Punjabi, to name a few.” 

Apart from India, the company’s largest communities are in the US, Russia, Indonesia, Brazil and Poland. The platform has 150 million monthly unique users, and Borkowski had said in early 2019 that 10,000 students were using Brainly in India. 

"We have been impressed by Brainly's growth over the past 10 years, particularly in the US and high-growth markets like India, Indonesia, Turkey and Brazil," Larry Illg, CEO of Naspers Ventures, said. 

The company has been experimenting with a freemium model (a business model where free use is limited, and the rest is charged) that lets users access verified answers on the platform for a nominal monthly fee.

In India, Brainly is competing with Naspers-backed test-prep platform Byju’s, which is valued at $5 billion.

It is also competing with learning platform Unacademy that raised $50 million (Rs 346 crore then) from Hong Kong-based Steadview Capital and existing investors Sequoia Capital and others in June this year.