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Firstcry enters education business with Oi Playschool acquisition

Firstcry enters education business with Oi Playschool acquisition
Photo Credit: 123RF.com

Pune-based Brainbees Solutions, which operates omnichannel baby products retailer FirstCry, entered the pre-primary education business with the acquisition Oi Playschool. The financial details of the transactions were undisclosed.

FirstCry acquired Oi Playschool, a part of the Hyderabad based People Combine Group, through Edubee Education, it said in a statement. LoEstro Advisors acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Oi Play Schools, the statement added.

"Our students and employees will both benefit with the long-term vision of FirstCry for pre-primary business," Naga Prasad Tummula, chairman of People Combine Group, said.

Oi Playschool was founded in 2010 and has a presence in Hyderabad and Bengaluru. 

FirstCry, founded in 2010 by Supam Maheshwari and Amitava Saha, is one of the most heavily funded baby products etailers in India. Notable investors in the company include SoftBank Group Corp, Chiratae Ventures, Valiant Capital Partners, New Enterprise Associates and SAIF Partners.

The company claims to offer more than two lakh baby and kids products across categories including diapers, feeding and nursing, skin and healthcare, toys, clothes, footwear, and fashion accessories among others. Besides an online storefront, the company also has 400-plus offline stores across India, according to its website.

In January this year, the company raised $149.36 million as part of the first tranche of a new funding round from Japanese technology conglomerate SoftBank.

The online baby products segment has seen some consolidation over the last few years. In 2015, auto-to-software conglomerate Mahindra & Mahindra bought FirstCry's rival BabyOye. A year later in October 2016, BabyOye was acquired by FirstCry in a cash-and-stock deal worth $54.3 million.

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