WHO IS BYJU RAVEENDRAN
Byju Raveendran is that the founding father of edutech start-up Byju’s. Son of physics and arithmetic lecturers from Azhikode village in Kannur district of Kerala, Raveendran may be a former teacher WHO turned associate degree enterpriser. associate degree engineering graduate, he started teaching maths to friends (and whoever else needed to learn) when payment a few of years at a company. He would facilitate students brace oneself for test |entrance examination| examination |exam| test}s just like the common entrance exam (CAT). In 2003, he appeared for CAT himself and scored 100%, despite not learning enough for the test. 2 years later, he helped some others crack CAT then set to require up teaching as a regular job. Raveendran went from teaching a number of friends, to teaching many students in massive auditoriums, and taking categories through satellite communication. He established suppose & Learn in 2011, to supply on-line lessons, before launching his main app in 2015. In 2018, Byju Raveendran won the EY enterpriser of the Year Award (Startup category).
Raveendran’s start-up Byju’s runs on a freemium model and trains students for Indian examinations like IIT-JEE, NEET, CAT and IAS, as well as international ones such as GRE and GMAT. In July, 2019 Byju’s acquired Indian cricket team jersey rights. Today, Byju’s has grown into the world’s most successful edutech start-ups with 33 million users and 2.2 million paid subscribers. According to data available as on July 2019, its valuation has quadrupled in the past year. That also makes it one of the top five most-valuable internet companies in the country. The present value of this unicorn company is $3.6 billion. The Byju’s app has become a business case at Harvard Business School. It has received several awards, including the Business Standard Annual Award for Corporate Excellence (2018).
Byju’s raises $200 mn in fresh funding; valuation surges to $12 bn
Less than two months after it raised $500 million in a financing round, edtech decacorn Byju’s is learned to have closed $200 million in a fresh round of funding. This has lifted the Bengaluru-based firm’s valuation to $12 billion – close to $1 billion higher when compared with the previous round.
Sources close to the development said private equity players such as BlackRock and T Rowe Price participated in the new round. While BlackRock is an existing investor in Byju’s, T Rowe joined as a new investor.
A Byju’s spokesperson declined to comment on the development. BlackRock and T Rowe Price could not be reached at the time of going to press.
With this investment, Byju’s has raised over $2.3 billion from investors in over 18 funding rounds.
The experience during the pandemic has already been one of learning, adaptation, and innovation.
The Byju Raveendran-founded company has seen a significant rise in its valuation, with education going the ‘distance’ and going remote, and where it’s back to school – at home.
Achieving decacorn status in July after receiving funding from global technology investment firm Bond in July when it was valued at around $10.5 billion, the online tutoring firm saw a further rise in its valuation to $11.1 billion when it raised a new round led by Silver Lake and saw participation by BlackRock, Sands Capital, and Alkon Capital in September.
In a recent interview with Business Standard, Raveendran had said while the company was generating enough cash now, funding by investors would help if the company went for acquisitions.
“There are always investors’ conversations going on. We have also raised money, not necessarily because we need it for any immediate purpose – we are not burning cash in India. Having money in the bank sometimes helps you to take (acquisition) decisions faster,” he had said.
With the fresh round of $200 million, Byju’s has further narrowed the valuation gap with financial services platform Paytm, which has a current valuation of $16 billion, according to the Hurun India Unicorn Index 2020.
The Bengaluru-based firm has also seen stellar growth since the lockdown in March, adding over 25 million new students on its platform.
Today, the app has over 70 million registered students and 4.5 million annual paid subscribers.
According to the Venture Intelligence data, the capital invested in edtech start-ups in the country has increased 4x to $1.5 billion in the first nine months this year, compared to $409 million in 2019.