Avendus Capital advises Byju’s on its Series C fund raise.

Service

Private Equity

Sector

Digital & Technology

Date

March 2016

Deal Value

USD 75 million

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Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd (known as BYJU’s – The Learning App) has raised $ 75 million financing. The Series C round was led by Sofina and Sequoia Capital, an existing investor.

Avendus Capital was the exclusive financial advisor for this transaction.

BYJU’s is India’s leading learning app and aims to democratize learning by bringing quality education to millions of students across the country. BYJU’s learning approach combines worldclass teachers, proven pedagogical methods, data sciences and machine learning to deliver personalized instruction, feedback and assessment for each student. The app will also provide significant new ways to collaboratively learn, from mentors and from each other in the coming months.

Since its launch six months ago, the learning app has already seen phenomenal engagement, with 2.5 million downloads and more than 120,000 paid annual subscribers. The latest funding will allow BYJU’s to deliver content in a radically new format, aggressively expand its product pipeline, launch into new markets, and continue to build its world class pool of talent to meet the surge in demand for their offering. The company has expanded its team by more than 600 people over the last two months.

“We are thrilled that Sequoia India and Sofina have backed BYJU’s, because it shows their resolute commitment to backing disruptive ideas and great teams,” said Byju Raveendran, Founder CEO of BYJU’s. “India has the largest K12 education system in the world, but we consistently rank low in all global assessments. We started BYJU’s as a mission to address these learning gaps - to make learning fun and engaging by making it contextual, visual and not just theoretical. Learning is currently driven by the fear of exams, and not the love for learning. We are excited to see the popularity of the app among students and the way it has made them fall in love with learning. We are especially excited by our new content that will significantly increase student engagement in a way that has never been done before.”

GV Ravishankar, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital India Advisors said, “At Sequoia we have always partnered with people with disruptive ideas and big vision. What excites us about Byju is not just the market potential but also his sheer commitment and passion to democratize access to education in India in a way that’s never been done before. Byju and his team are pushing the boundaries for how immersive media and technology can deliver superior education for millions of students, anywhere and anytime.”

About Byju’s:

Founded by Byju Raveendran in 2011, BYJU’s offers learning programs that are effective and engaging for Class 6-12 & Test prep (JEE, AIPMT, CAT, IAS, GRE & GMAT). It launched BYJU’s - The learning app in 2015, which has seen over 2.5 million downloads in a short span of time. BYJU’s superior content is a result of a 500 member strong R&D team working closely together across three specialised verticals: content creation team drawn from accomplished IIT and IIM graduates, a skilled media production house who transform the content into interactive experiences and a technology team that builds an adaptive platform to give each learner a personalized experience.

BYJU’s Learning App makes use of original content, watch-and-learn videos, rich animations and interactive simulations that, as opposed to rote memorization, make learning contextual and visual. Equally important, the app adapts to the unique learning style of each student, inviting them to explore different concepts and suggests a learning footprint for the student that can also address any gaps in learning. The company aims to inspire a lifelong love of learning.

For more information, please visit www.byjus.com 

About Sequoia Capital

Headquartered in Menlo Park, Sequoia Capital partners with companies across all sectors and stages of growth. Their other focus geographies are USA, China and Israel. Its other investments in India include Zomato, Practo, PepperTap, Ola Cabs, Micromax, Cardekho, Craftsvilla among others.

For more information, please visit www.sequoiacap.com 

About Sofina

Sofina is a European, family controlled, Investment Company headquartered in Brussels. Sofina supports entrepreneurs and families managing growing companies. Its other investments in India include Practo, FreeCharge, Flipkart, Myntra and Hector Beverages.

For more information, please visit www.sofina.be 

About Avendus Capital

The Avendus Group (Avendus) is a leading provider of financial services with an emphasis on customized solutions in the areas of financial advisory, capital markets, wealth management, credit solutions and alternative asset management. Avendus relies on its extensive experience, in-depth domain understanding and knowledge of the regulatory environment, to offer customized solutions that enable clients to meet their strategic aspirations. Avendus has been consistently ranked among the leading financial advisors by overall number of deals. In CY2015, the firm was amongst the top three financial advisors by overall number of deals in India (as per Mergermarket). It has a strong track record of cross-border transactions and has helped multiple clients benefit from opportunities across geographies. Avendus’s wide range of clients is testimony to its ability to serve its corporate clients throughout their life cycle – from growth stage funding to complex, large sized transactions later in the cycle.

Avendus Wealth Management Pvt. Ltd. caters to investment advisory and portfolio management needs of Family offices, Large Corporates and Ultra High Net worth Individuals spanning all asset classes. Avendus Capital Inc. and Avendus Capital (UK) Pvt. Ltd. located in New York and London respectively are wholly owned subsidiaries offering M&A and Private Equity syndication services to clients in the respective regions. For more information, please visit www.avendus.com 

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