Edtech start-up Vedantu has laid off around 200 employees and contractual staff, joining a long list of tech start-ups that have trimmed team sizes to keep costs under check.
Layoffs at Bengaluru-based Vedantu come just a few months after the ed-tech firm attained the coveted unicorn status in a $100 million funding round led by Temasek in September 2021.
In a statement released on Thursday, Vendatu said that around 3.5% of its employees were affected due to some “rejigs” and “rebalancing” of certain academic roles.
“We have over 6,000 employees, out of which 120 contractors and 80 full-time or 3.5% of the total strength, are academics or assistant teachers, were being reevaluated. We have an annual contract with them, and at the beginning of every academic year, we follow a process of load rebalancing where we rejig, pertaining to these roles, based on our growth expectations. Reassessment cannot be done in the middle of the year as the learning experience and continuity of the teachers throughout the year is our first priority”.
The start-up, however, mentioned that there are plans to hire more employees in the coming months to meet demand from new users.
“With more technology intervention, restructuring of the class format, and changes in the categories, we relook at these roles of our academics and assistant teachers. As we synchronise our growth goals for this year, we are also hiring more than 1,000 employees in various teams including 100+ for similar positions,” the statement added.
Founded in 2011 by Anand Prakash, Pulkit Jain, Saurabh Saxena, and Vamsi Krishna, Vedantu is one of the biggest edtech start-ups to come out of India. Vedantu offers free and paid online classes (complementing school education) to K12 students, as well as preparation for competitive exams such as IIT-JEE, NEET, etc.
To date, the start-up has raised around $290 million in funding led by top investors like Accel, Tiger Global, Coatue, WestBridge Capital and many others.
Prior to Vedantu, the edtech segment alone has seen multiple layoffs across big names such as Unacademy and Lido. Last month Uncademy laid off close to 600 employees, in a cost-optimisation drive. The edtech unicorn currently employs more than 6,000 full-time and contractual workers. Ronnie Screwvala-backed edtech start-up Lido Learning also laid off another 200 employees in February this year due to a financial crisis stemming from a shortage of funds.
Recently few high-growth start-ups including Trell, OkCredit, Furlenco, Lido, Meesho, Unacademy, and Better.com collectively laid off more than 1,500 employees. Experts say that a slowdown in the growth and late-stage funding coupled with investors and board members turning cautious post-covid have pushed start-ups to trim down their employee-related expenses.