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Edtech Startup Toppr Raises $35 Mn From Kaizen, SAIF Partners To Increase Brand Visibility

Edtech Startup Toppr Raises $35 Mn From Kaizen, SAIF Partners To Increase Brand Visibility

Larger rival BYJU’S raised $540 Mn just a few days back

Toppr to use funds to increase visibility, branding

Valuation between $150 Mn - $200 Mn, say industry execs

Hyderabad-based edtech startup Toppr has raised funding of $35 Mn (INR 246.13 Cr) from Kaizen Private Equity and existing investors SAIF Partners, Helion Ventures, Kaizen PE and Eight Roads Ventures. Alteria Capital and Times Group’s strategic investment arm, Brand Capital, also participated in the round.

Founder and CEO of Toppr, Zeeshan Hayath said that the funding will be used to create brand awareness, accelerate user acquisition, increase its geographical footprint and invest in training and development.

Founded in 2013 by Hayath and Hemanth Goteti, Toppr started with courses for class XI and XII. It now offers adaptive learning for class V to XII and also competitive exams such as JEE. With the infusion of funds Toppr plans to pursue aggressive expansion plans to reach out to students across the country and to increase its geographical presence. Toppr projects its revenue to be over $500 Mn (INR 3,507.92 Cr) in the next three years.

Sandeep Aneja, Managing Partner, Kaizen PE said: “A robust pedagogical approach that keeps students engaged and delivers outcomes, thoughtful use of artificial intelligence, and a strong management team are aspects of Toppr that convinced us about the company’s ability to continue making a significant positive difference to the way children learn.”

According to a media report, industry executives say that after the funding round, Toppr’s valuation could be between $150 Mn (INR 1,054 Cr) and $200 Mn (INR 1,406.51 Cr). Toppr is also reportedly in talks with investors to raise about $80 Mn – $100 Mn (INR 562.6 Cr – INR 703.25 Cr) more.

The announcement comes just few days after its larger rival – Bengaluru-based BYJU’S – reported it had raised $540 Mn (INR 3,797.57 Cr)  in a funding round led by South Africa’s Naspers Ventures to fuel its expansion plan.

“We have been able to get six million downloads and one million monthly active users despite better branding by Byju’s and our packages priced higher,” Hayath reportedly said, adding that: “We now want to increase our marketshare, especially among students in lower grades.”

So far, Toppr has raised $58 Mn in cumulative funding from investors like SAIF Partners, InnoVen, Helion Ventures, and FIL Capital Management. In February 2016, Toppr also acquired edtech startup Manch. The company is pursuing aggressive expansion plans, to reach out to students across the country.

In an earlier media statement, Toppr has projected 20x growth in its junior grades and 15x growth in its senior grades subscription by 2021, making it a startup with over $500 Mn in revenue in the next four years.

Toppr is facing a challenge from edtech Unicorn BYJU’S, Unacademy, Reliance-owned Embibe, Examify, TestBook, Vedantu among others.

In India, elearning will see approximately 8x growth in the next five years, says a recent report by Google, KPMG. This will have a significant impact on the edtech market that has a potential to touch $1.96 Bn by 2021 from where it stands now i.e. $247 Mn.