GGV Capital leads extended Series C round in Vedantu

GGV Capital leads extended Series C round in Vedantu
Photo Credit: VCCircle
13 Feb, 2020

Live online tutoring startup Vedantu has raised an additional $24 million as part of its Series C round, led by Menlo Park, California, and Shanghai-based venture capital firm GGV Capital.

The Bengaluru-based startup’s existing investors participated in the round, GGV Capital said in a statement, without disclosing their names.

As part of the deal, for which the RainMaker Group acted as Vedantu’s exclusive financial advisor, GVV Capital managing partner Hans Tung will join the Bengaluru-based startup’s board.

Vedantu will use the capital to invest in brand building and to expand its product offerings for students from kindergarten to class 5, the statement said.

The extension to the Series C comes a little over six months after Vedantu raised $42 million led by Tiger Global and Westbridge Capital.

Accel, Omidyar Network India, Beijing-based TAL Education, and Prince Maximilian, CEO of Liechtenstein-based asset management firm LGT Group and part of the Liechtenstein royalty, also participated in the round.

About eight months earlier, Vedantu raised $11 million in a Series B funding round led by impact investment firm Omidyar Network.

The latest round takes the company’s overall funding to $83.5 million till date.

“With GGV’s track record in the edtech space launched by my colleague Jenny Lee in 2013, we look for teams that deliver technology-enhanced education that fits the local needs. We think Vedantu has hit an inflection point with its WAVE product, through which teachers with a track record of delivering superior results can offer personalised education to many students at once,” Tung said.

Vedantu was founded in 2011 by Vamsi Krishna, Anand Prakash, Saurabh Saxena and Pulkit Jain. The online platform allows interaction between students and tutors via a whiteboard, audio and video environment.

The company offers one-year courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry and biology for students from class 6 to class 12 in the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) boards. For students in classes 11 and 12, Vedantu also offers courses to help with engineering and medical entrance exams.

“As we continue to grow our student enrolments by 4.5x year-on-year, we are gearing to invest in brand and entering very strongly in new categories of age group of 4-10 beyond current customer segments,” Vamsi Krishna, CEO and co-founder, Vedantu, said.

The platform operates on a freemium model, where students can use some content for free and pay for some, depending on the access level.

According to the company, 25 million users access free content every month while over 500 teachers provide live classes to six million learners per month.

In the live course segment, Vedantu competes with Unacademy and Gradeup. Unacademy focuses on providing students with access to experienced teachers instead of fully designing course structures while Gradeup helps exam aspirants prepare for competitive examinations.

Unacademy raised $50 million in a Series D funding round from Steadview Capital, Sequoia Capital India and Nexus Venture Partners in June last year. Noida-based Gradeup secured $7 million in its Series A funding round from Times Internet (TIL) in November last year.

Byju's is the most funded and valued online education venture in India. Last week, it expanded its ongoing funding round with an additional $200 million infusion from existing investor General Atlantic, at a $8.2 billion valuation.

GGV Capital focuses on seed-to-growth stage investments across consumer, new retail, social, digital, internet, enterprise and cloud and frontier technology sectors. The firm was founded in 2000 and manages $6.2 billion in capital across 13 funds. Edtech is a key global investment thesis for GGV with portfolio companies like HuoHua, ZuoYeBang, XiaoBu, Lambda School, LiuLiShuo and Ruangguru. Other past and present portfolio companies include Affirm, Airbnb, Alibaba, Bitsight, ByteDance, Ctrip, Didi Chuxing, Grab, Slack and Square.