The investment will be used to shore up the UPSC tech vertical, hire teachers, pedagogy development and create UPSC-related content
Physics Wallah plans to open more than 10 offline centres in cities such as Jaipur, Allahabad, Patna, Lucknow, Indore and Pune over the next three years
The development comes weeks after Physics Wallah announced an investment of $10 Mn, in multiple tranches, to scale up its offline coaching vertical Vidyapeeth School
With an eye on strengthening its portfolio, edtech startup Physics Wallah (PW) plans to invest INR 100 Cr to further scale up its UPSC vertical.
The capital will be deployed to augment the startup’s products across both online and offline segments. The investment will also be used to shore up its tech vertical, hire teachers, for pedagogy development and creating UPSC-related content.
It is pertinent to note that PW caters to online UPSC aspirants through UPSC Wallah, while the offline vertical comes under the ambit of PWOnlyIAS.
The announcement also saw PW unveiling its first offline UPSC coaching centre, PWOnlyIAS, in Delhi’s Rajinder Nagar. The company plans to open more than 10 offline centres in cities such as Jaipur, Allahabad, Patna, Lucknow, Indore and Pune over the next three years. The vertical aims to cater to 3 Lakh aspirants by 2026.
Besides, PWOnlyIAS also plans to launch courses for state public service commission aspirants in online mode. Currently, it offers similar courses for Bihar (in Hindi and Hinglish), Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra (in Marathi).
“After experiencing great success with UPSC Wallah, we saw the need to extend our expertise to the UPSC community through offline centres and to do that we plan to invest INR 100 cr in strengthening our offerings,” said PW cofounder and chief executive officer (CEO) Alakh Pandey.
The company has so far onboarded 50 faculty members that will undergo a faculty training program to ensure teaching methodologies and curriculum.
Founded in 2020 by Pandey and Prateek Maheshwari, PW operates across both online and offline verticals, and offers test-preparation courses for engineering, medical and UPSC exams.
PW Splurges On Offline Play
This comes a couple of weeks after the unicorn said that it would invest $10 Mn (INR 82 Cr) across multiple tranches to scale up its offline coaching vertical Vidyapeeth School. Back then, PW said that it aims to scale up the initiative to 300 schools across Tier-III and Tier-IV cities and towns by 2025-26. Earlier this month, the edtech unicorn announced the launch of its 50 such offline centres.
The move to focus on the UPSC vertical comes at a time when the company is looking to change its core focus from just JEE and NEET to other courses.
The offline foray also comes as PW’s online UPSC vertical appears to have picked up pace. With 75,000+ aspirants already enrolled in ‘paid batches’ on the app, the company looks to tap into the offline segment as well.
The company claims to have educational content available in nine languages, including Hindi, English, Bengali, Marathi and Telugu. With 23 Mn subscribers across 48 YouTube channels, the edtech platform counts more than 10 Mn downloads in its kitty.
However, rising competition from giants such as BYJU’S and Unacademy in the offline space presents a big challenge for the edtech unicorn. To add to that, even after raising a mega $100 Mn fundraise in 2022, cash-heavy expansion plans seem to have brought the startup back to the markets looking for investment.
It was earlier reported that PW was in talks for a fresh funding round and was looking to raise at least $250 Mn at a valuation of $3.3 Bn. Despite being one of the few profitable edtech platforms, the startup continues to be bogged down by challenges around attrition of star teachers, and soaring competition in the M&A-headed edtech space.
Overall, India’s edtech market continues to be a lucrative space, despite its challenges. As per Inc42, the homegrown edtech space is projected to reach a total addressable market size of $29 Bn by 2030.