Mumbai-based edtech startup Lead School, which offers technology solutions to help schools and teachers digitise the learning experience, has raised $28 Mn in Series C funding round led by WestBridge Capital. The company’s existing investor Elevar Equity has also participated in this round.
Elevar Equity had previously infused $7 Mn in Lead School’s Series B round in 2019 and $1 Mn in Series A funding round in 2017. The edtech startup is planning to use the latest funding to target more private schools in Tier 2 cities and beyond. Currently, 80-85% of its customers include affordable private schools in Tier 2, 3 and 4 towns.
“Affordable schools in small towns is where the problem is. In metros, the teachers are doing a great job. But in small towns, the parent aspiration is high, but teacher skill is low, and that’s the sweet spot where we work,” cofounder and CEO Sumeet Mehta said.
Lead School is also looking to use this capital to grow its sales channels, sign up new customers, and enhance its technology offerings to help schools better monitor and improve student learning outcomes.
Founded in 2012 by Mehta and Smita Deorah, Lead School offers integrated curriculum and technology solutions to affordable private schools enabling them to impart better and advanced education.
The company claims to have grown its network of schools from 150 to 800 in the past one year, and expects to maintain the same growth momentum in 2020 as the pandemic has strengthened its position in the market with schools are looking for more options to digitise. “Previously, schools were hesitant to adopt technology, but Covid-19 has shown people that the age-old ways are not going to work,” Mehta added.
Lead School has developed its own high-quality learning content for students, teaching resources for teachers, technology integrations for schools to monitor the performance of students and a platform where parents can monitor their child’s academic performance.
“We see great potential in Lead School, given their innovative and focused approach in ensuring accessible, quality school-level education for all,” Sandeep Singhal, managing director of WestBridge Capital said. WestBridge Capital is also an investor in edtech giant Vedantu.
According to Inc42 Plus, the Indian online learning market is expected to be worth $1.96 Bn by 2021. According to the repor, before Covid-19 lockdown, seven out of 10 top edtech players were focussed on school-level online learning. Vedantu, LearnCBSE, BYJU’S, Toppr, Tiwari Academy, Meritnation and Gradeup collectively captured 51.25% of the traffic share.