Deal Roundup: Edtech funding hits the high notes again; Nazara, Info Edge, Glance make acquisitions

Deal Roundup: Edtech funding hits the high notes again; Nazara, Info Edge, Glance make acquisitions
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
18 Jun, 2021

The booming edtech sector continued on its lucky streak with Byju’s edging past fintech Paytm to become India’s most valuable startup. The Bengaluru based company now commands a valuation of $16.5 billion, after closing a $340 million funding round from an investor consortium that included Abu Dhabi state entity ADQ, Blackstone, Phoenix Rising–Beacon Holdings, UBS Group and Zoom founder Eric Yuan. 

Another significant edtech deal this week was Classplus. The platform’s Noida based parent, Bunch Microtechnologies, raised a $30 million round led by venture capital firm GSV Ventures.

Separately, Singapore based Eruditus Learning Systems is tipped to emerge as the next India-born edtech unicorn – startups valued at $1 billion or more – VCCircle and TechCircle reported this week. The startup, which offers executive education programmes, is in talks with SoftBank Group Corp and other investors to raise a $250-300 million round.   

In other deals, Apna, a professional network for grey and blue collar workers, saw its valuation swell to $570 million when it secured $70 million in a Series B funding round led by US based investors Insight Partners and Tiger Global Management. The Bengaluru based startup has raised a total of over $90 million so far and crossed the $500 million valuation mark within 16 months of product launch. 

The fintech sector also weighed in this week with three deals. RenewBuy, Fampay, InstaDApp raised double-digit funding rounds this week. 
Digital insurance platform RenewBuy landed $45 million in a round led by Apis Growth Fund II, a private equity fund managed by Apis Partners LLP. Fampay, which provides a payments service focused on teenagers, secured $38 million as part of its Series A round led by Elevation Capital. And, blockchain-based financial middleware services provider InstaDApp Labs raised $10 million in a round led by cryptocurrency focused venture capital firm Standard Crypto. 

In all, a total of 21 startups raised capital this week. Of those four did not disclose the size of their funding rounds. The remaining 17 accounted for the $568.5 million raised during the week.

On the mergers and acquisitions front, aaming and esports media company Nazara Technologies marked its first acquisition since going public in March. It bought a 69.82% stake in Turkish game publishing company Arrakis Tanitim Organizasyon Pazarlama San. Tic. Ltd. Sti., also known as Publishme. The acquisition, valued at Rs 20 crore, is expected to help the company enter the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regions in the freemium games segment.

Naukri parent Info Edge acquired recruit management platform Zwayam Digital for Rs 61 crore to expand its offerings in the online recruitment solutions market.

Glance, part of mobile advertising company InMobi and owner of short-video platform Roposo, said on Monday it had acquired social commerce firm Shop101 to launch celebrity and influencer-led live commerce on mobile lock screens. The financial details of the deal were not disclosed.