Byju’s nears $150 million acquisition of edtech rival
India’s biggest e-learning startup, Byju’s, is close to signing a deal to acquire rival Toppr Technologies Pvt. in a transaction valued at roughly $150 million, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Toppr provides online learning materials to students in grades 5 through 12 and its backers include SAIF Partners and Helion Ventures. It is the latest target for Byju’s, which has been expanding aggressively in recent months to capture the surge in demand for online education triggered by the pandemic. In January, it agreed a $1 billion deal to acquire brick-and-mortar test prep leader Aakash Educational Services Ltd.
Byju’s and Toppr representatives did not immediately respond to emails seeking comment.
Founded in Bangalore in 2011, Byju’s has emerged as India’s leader in online learning. The company spent the latter half of 2020 raising capital from notable names including Mary Meeker and Yuri Milner. Two separate funding rounds in September, led by Silver Lake and BlackRock, respectively, valued the startup at $11 billion.
Mumbai-based Toppr takes an app-based approach to education with video classes, mock tests, revision cards reminiscent of Instagram Stories and live support for students stuck on a question. It provides its services internationally and counts more than 16 million students, according to its website. Paid subscribers are a fraction of that. It started a code-tutoring unit called Codr last summer.
The deal for Toppr’s takeover is close but has not yet been finalized, said the person, who asked not to be named due to its private nature.
By Saritha Rai