As the Covid-19 pandemic removes the barriers of location in an ever-changing digital world, parents of kids in the K-12 (kindergarten to 12th grade) segment, prefer high-quality tutors, no matter where they are located. To further such edtech startups — “tech-intensive, India-centric businesses in education” — Aarin Capital Partners, a proprietary venture fund, founded by T.V. Mohandas Pai and Ranjan Pai, has led a $3 Mn (INR 22 Cr) Pre-Series A round in New Delhi-based edtech, 88academics.
A part of Singapore-based 88tuition — 88academics, will use the funds to develop India-specific content for the K-12 segment in India, as it rapidly expands in Asia.
The round also saw participation from Piyush Gupta of DBS Group, Vinod Gupta of VG Learning Destination, P S Jayakumar, ex-MD of Bank of Baroda, Ramesh Swaminathan of Lupin, Ajay Abrol of Nomura Singapore, Prem Rajani of Rajani Associates, Akshay Gupta and N Jayakumar from Prime Securities.
Founded in 2018 by Anil Ahuja, 88tuition provides video-based learning material to all students in Singapore. Its student base has since grown with a customer base across the world — from Australia to America. The platform claims to have over 7.5K videos, 4K assessments, and 30K questions for students in subjects such as Maths, Science, English, and Chinese, majorly focusing on the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE).
The startup also claims to have captured over 6% of the edtech market in Singapore in terms of registered users and 2% of paid users.
88academics has sourced funds from Aarin Capital, which has a successful track record of investments and exits in Indian startups such as edtech unicorn BYJU’S, epharmacy startup PharmEasy, interior designer HomeLane, and P2P lending marketplace Faircent, etc.
Edtech has always been pegged as a great equaliser that could deliver access to good education in remote areas. According to Inc42 Plus analysis, the market size of edtech in India is estimated to grow 3.7x in the next five years, from $2.8 Bn (2020) to $10.4 Bn (2025). Amid the $10 Bn market size, K12 learning solutions are expected to account for 41% of the total edtech market.
In the rising momentum, recently children’s extracurricular edtech startup Yellow Class had raised $6 Mn in its series A round led by Elevation Capital and others, Camp K12 bagged $12 Mn in a Series A round from Matrix Partners India and Elevation Capital.
The 1:1 edtech model or the tuition model, especially for teaching coding to K-12, is picking up pace in the Indian education system with dominant players such as BYJU’S-led WhiteHat Jr, Toppr Coders, Code Chef, Vedantu Superkids among others with a lion’s share in the market. On the other hand, there are early-stage startups such as Tinkerly, Masai School and others targeting the 1:1 space for various age groups.