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Friday, December 8, 2023

Indian edtech giant Byju’s valued at $22B in new funding round

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Indian edtech giant Byju’s has secured funding of $250 million. The company is now being valued at  $22 billion.

Byju’s, an Indian edtech company, said Monday that it had raised $250 million in fresh capital from current investors. The firm is attempting to negotiate the market slump that has prompted it to delay its initial public offering and lay off thousands of employees.

According to a source familiar with the subject, the latest fundraising valued the Bengaluru-based business at $22 billion, the same amount at which it obtained a financing round in March of this year.

The business, India’s most valued startup, declined to comment on the valuation but did confirm that Qatar’s sovereign fund, Qatar Investment Authority, participated in the transaction. It did not name any additional backers.

In an earlier interview, Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO of Byju’s, stated that the business was working with existing sovereign funds to put together a fresh round.

Monday’s financing announcement comes on the heels of Byju’s decision to slash 5% of its personnel, or around 2,500 jobs, across different departments, as well as its marketing budget, in order to improve its finances and reach profitability by the end of the current fiscal year.

Byju’s trains students for undergraduate and graduate-level courses, and it has recently enlarged its catalog to assist all students. Tutors using the Byju’s app use real-life things like pizza and cake to teach complicated concepts.

According to the business, more than 150 million students utilize its services. According to Prosus Ventures, a Byju’s investor, the Indian business has spent more than $2.5 billion in the last two years to buy companies abroad as it grows and broadens its products in numerous foreign markets.

Earlier this year, the business planned to go public via SPAC at a valuation of more than $40 billion. However, such discussions did not result in a contract since a severe reversal in global markets wiped out most of the profits from the 13-year bull run.

Raveendran stated, “Byju’s is currently at that sweet spot of its growth narrative when both unit economics and economies of scale are in its favor. This implies that the cash we are presently investing in our firm will result in profitable growth as well as long-term social benefit. Regardless of the current macroeconomic environment, 2022-23 is expected to be our strongest year in terms of sales, growth, and profitability. The continued support of our respected investors supports our route to profitability and reaffirms the impact we have made thus far.”

In recent months, Byju’s has made efforts to pay off its debts and other outstanding liabilities. It just paid Blackstone the $234 million it owed the global investment firm for the $1 billion acquisition of Aakash. In the fiscal year that concluded in March of current year, it achieved unaudited gross revenue of $1.258 billion.

The firm reported $570 million in revenue between April and July. Prosus Ventures, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Sequoia Capital India, Silver Lake, Owl Ventures, UBS, and Blackrock are among the investors in Byju’s, which has received approximately $6 billion to far.

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