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BYJU’S and QIA To Launch Edtech Business In MENA Region

BYJU’S and QIA To Launch Edtech Business In MENA Region

The new entity will drive research and innovation to create cutting-edge learning solutions customised for students in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region

QIA and BYJU's will initially work together to set the stage for the MENA-focused online education business

The new entity, will be a wholly owned subsidiary of BYJU's in Qatar

Bengaluru-based edtech unicorn BYJU’S and Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) have partnered to launch a new edtech business and R&D centre in Doha, Qatar. 

The new entity will drive research and innovation to create cutting-edge learning solutions customised for students in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

In the recent 2022 Doha Forum, Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO of BYJU’s and Mansoor Al-Mahmoud, CEO of QIA, signed an MOU in the presence of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of the State of Qatar and chairman of QIA, as well as representatives of BYJU’S. 

Raveendran said, “As we continue to witness accelerated growth in Indian and international markets, we are excited to partner with QIA in this next phase of expansion, development and building new innovations in learning in the MENA region. Together we hope to achieve stronger development outcomes. With a sustained focus on creating life-long value for our learners, this partnership with QIA is a significant step in realizing our vision.”

Founded in 2015 by Raveendran and Divya Gokulnath, BYJU’S offers an array of learning programs including K-12, competitive exams and professional upskilling to students and professionals. The edtech giant claims to have 50 Mn registered students and 3.5 Mn paid subscriptions.

As per the current deal, QIA and BYJU’S will initially work together to set the stage for the MENA-focused online education business. The new entity, which will be a wholly owned subsidiary of BYJU’S in Qatar, will introduce personalised and innovative learning offerings to the region. 

Additionally, it will set up a R&D center in Qatar to create customised learning content and products in the Arabic language. 

Back in 2019, QIA invested $150 Mn in the edtech startup BYJU’S. The round also saw participation from edtech investment company Owl Ventures. Then, the fresh capital was used for international expansion and tailoring its product for a global audience. 

Recently, BYJU’S is named as an official sponsor of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 that will take place from November 21 to December 18, 2022. Through this partnership, the edtech unicorn will leverage its rights to the 2022 FIFA World Cup marks, emblem and assets, and run unique promotions to connect with passionate football fans around the world. 

It will also create engaging and creative content with educational messages as part of a multifaceted activation plan.

According to an Inc42 report, BYJU’S raised $800 Mn in a strategic funding round led by CEO and founder Byju Raveendran, Sumeru Ventures, Vitruvian Partners, and BlackRock in March 2022. The edtech giant raised this round of funding at a $22 Bn valuation. 

Byju has invested $400 Mn as part of this round. With this round, Byju will hold 25% in the company, while cofounder Divya Gokulnath and management will hold a 4% stake. 

The funding will be used to accelerate the fruition of the startup’s long term goals.