Silver Lake joins India’s edtech bandwagon with Byju’s investment

Silver Lake joins India’s edtech bandwagon with Byju’s investment
Photo Credit: Pixabay
8 Sep, 2020

Byju’s, one of the world’s most valued edtech companies, on Tuesday said it has raised a new round of funding from private equity firm Silver Lake, and returning investors Tiger Global, General Atlantic and Owl Ventures. 

The Bengaluru based company did not disclose the specifics of the investment round.

Since the national lockdown in India in March, Byju’s, operated by Think & Learn, claims to have seen over 20 million new students start learning from its platform. The app has over 64 million registered students and 4.2 million annual paid subscriptions, the decacorn said in a statement. A decacorn is referred to a privately held startup with $10 billion valuation or more. 

The company has seen its topline grow two-fold to Rs 2,800 crore (about $381 million as per current exchange rates) in the financial year ended March 2020, it added.

"We look forward to working with them as Byju’s builds on and accelerates its compelling growth trajectory by forging new partnerships and continuing to cultivate a comprehensive ecosystem of innovative educational offerings,” Silver Lake co-CEO Greg Mondre said in the statement.

Last month, Byju’s acquired Mumbai based online coding school WhiteHat Jr. for $300 million, right before raising about $122 million from DST Global, the investment firm headed by billionaire Yuri Milner.

Menlo Park, California headquartered Silver Lake has about $60 billion in assets under management and capital commitments. It has backed companies such as vacation homes rental platform Airbnb, Chinese technology conglomerate Alibaba and its fintech affiliate Ant Financial and microblogging platform Twitter among others. 

The investment in Byju’s marks Silver Lake’s first in India’s booming edtech sector. The firm, which focuses globally on the technology sector, has earlier bought stakes in Jio Platforms. 

In the online education space in India, Byju’s competes with other venture capital backed firms such as Unacademy, Vedantu, Toppr and Gradeup. 

Unacademy recently raised $150 million in a growth funding round led by the SoftBank Group. The company is currently valued at $1.45 billion post-money.