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Ronnie Screwvala-Led upGrad Completes Acquisition Of Higher Education Startup Talentedge

Ronnie Screwvala-Led upGrad Completes Acquisition Of Higher Education Startup Talentedge

The deal was first announced in December 2021

Talentedge will continue to operate under the upGrad umbrella carrying its own name

Talentedge was valued at INR 205 Cr ($27 Mn) and the near 100% share swap transaction was done at an upGrad value of $2 Bn

Edtech unicorn upGrad has completed the acquisition of higher education startup Talentedge.

The deal was first announced in December 2021, and upGrad has now finished integrating Talentedge within its group of companies. Talentedge was valued at INR 205 Cr ($27 Mn) and the near 100% share swap transaction was done at an upGrad value of $2 Bn.

upGrad did not disclose the deal value. Surprisingly, in its press statement, upGrad said that the deal is valued at 3-4X of Talentedge’s this year’s revenue. Talentedge is expected to report revenue of over INR 130 Cr this year and aims to double its revenue in the coming year, the startup claimed in the press statement. 

Under the deal, Talentedge will come under the upGrad umbrella and continue to operate with its own name. The Sekhsaria family, 100% owners of Talentedge, has received a stake in upGrad as part of the deal.

Gurugram-based Talentedge offers more than 60 courses in partnership with more than 20 universities. It has partnered with several leading Indian and international institutes including IIMs, XLRI, MICA, eCornell, and UCLA extension among others, and has more than 5,00,000 individual and corporate learners.

Founded by Malik in 2012, Talentedge had acquired a significant stake in Hyderabad-based GreyCampus for an undisclosed amount in 2019.

“Talentedge integrated inside upGrad will be a formidable combination that will be very value accretive for both,” said Narayanan V, who leads private investments at the Sekhsaria Family Office, 100% owners of Talentedge.

Speaking of the deal, Mayank Kumar, cofounder and MD at upGrad, said, “The coming together of Talentedge with upGrad cement our leadership position in India’s LifeLongLearning market and we see great synergies, cost savings and our ability to scale and consolidate.”

The deal has become one of the largest consolidations in the edtech segment. The largest deal ever in India’s edtech space still remains the last year’s BYJU’s acquisition of Aakash Educational, the 33-year-old chain of physical coaching centres, for an eye-watering $1 Bn.

Founded in 2015 by Ronnie Screwvala, Mayank Kumar, Phalgun Kompalli and Ravijot Chugh, upGrad offers higher education courses in collaboration with various universities. It claims to have a million users globally, of which 45,000 are paid students.

It became the third edtech startup to enter the unicorn club in India after BYJU’s and Unacademy. The startup had raised $185 Mn from Temasek, International Finance Corporation to cross the billion-dollar valuation mark.

However, upGrad has seen its loss widen by almost 2.6X in FY21. The startup posted a consolidated loss after tax of INR 211 Cr in FY21, a 167.8% rise from the INR 78.8 Cr it witnessed in FY20. 

However, it has seen its revenue from operations grow almost by 2X in the financial year ending on March 31, 2021, i.e., FY21. upGrad has posted a consolidated revenue worth INR 302 Cr from its operations, a 86% rise from the INR 162.3 Cr it recorded in FY20. 

The total revenue from operations includes revenue from the sale of products, and total revenue from operations other than finance. The Temasek-backed edtech startup posted INR 60 Lakh under its ‘other income’ segment in FY21, thus taking the total revenue of upGrad in FY21 to INR 302.6 Cr, a significant rise from INR 162.5 Cr it clocked in FY20.