Online education start-up Byju’s has raised an undisclosed amount in funding from China’s Tencent Holdings. This latest round of funding will help the firm accelerate product development for new markets and enable inorganic growth through acquisitions, Byju’s said in a statement today. In March this year, Byju’s had raised an undisclosed amount from Belgium-based investment firm Verlinvest. The Bengaluru-based firm in September last year had raised USD 50 million (about Rs 332.3 crore) from a clutch of investors, led by Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) and Sequoia Capital. In December, it received additional funding from IFC, a member of the World Bank Group.
“With increased brand awareness and strong adoption amongst students, this year we expect the revenue to double again and we will be profitable on a full-year basis,” Byju’s Founder and CEO Byju Raveendran said. He added that this infusion will help the company create highly effective tech-enabled learning programmes to cater to requirements in new markets. Tencent has been aggressively investing in internet- driven companies across the globe. In India, earlier this year, it was a part of Flipkart’s USD 1.4 billion fund raise and is also an investor in WhatsApp rival Hike messenger. Launched in 2015, Byju’s delivers original content, video lessons and interactive activities for school students.
It has 9 million students registered on its platform and over 450,000 annual paid subscribers. Byju’s has seen more than 100 per cent growth, with revenue increasing from Rs 115 crore (2015-16) to Rs 260 (2016-17) crore. The company claims to have turned profitable last quarter.