Exclusive: Skill development firm Rise India buys majority stake in Padhopadhao.com
Gurgaon-based Rise India, an education and skill development firm, has acquired a 60% stake in tutor aggregator Padhopadhao.com as it aims to establish its presence in the online tuition market, according to a person privy to the development.
The companies confirmed the transaction but declined to give any financial details.
The acquisition will help Padhopadhao.com expand operations to cities such as Mumbai, Jaipur, Chennai, Chandigarh, Bangalore and Hyderabad. The firm claims to have about 48,000 registered tutors covering Delhi-NCR, and says it has served almost 60,000 students.
Padhaopdhao.com was started in 2012 by Hemant Garg and Akhilesh Kumar; they will continue to lead the portal. It helps students get tutors, researchers and scholars. It provides teachers for Olympiads, IIT-JEE, Medical-PMT and other competitive exams. It offers students a lead-based subscription plan and charges accordingly.
Rise India CEO Ajay Chhangani said home tuitions in India is an unorganised sector with a lot of scope. "Our effort is toâ€¦ provide, through technology and innovative automatic tools, an integrated platform to make the entire process beneficial for students as well as for tutors," he said.
Last year, Rise India had said it plans to invest Rs 35 crore in education startups. Padhopadhao.com marks the fourth acquisition of the three-year-old firm. In 2012, it had acquired training firm ICFE for Rs 10 crore. It also has a joint venture with Coimbatore-based RVS Group.
The ed-tech segment has elicited a lot of investor interest of late. Earlier this month, Cuelearn Pvt Ltd, a Bangalore-based startup that runs after-school math learning programmes under Cuemath, raised $4 million (Rs 26.7 crore) in Series A funding led by Sequoia Capital. Existing investor Unitus Seed Fund also invested in the round.
Last month, ed-tech startup Fundamentor secured an undisclosed amount of seed funding from entrepreneur and former venture capitalist Subramanya SV.
In March, ed-tech startup Byju's raised $75 million from Sequoia and Belgian investment firm Sofina, in what is perhaps the largest such deal in this segment till date. The same month, Unacademy mobilised $500,000 from Blume Ventures and a clutch of angel investors while iDreamCareer.com, a career planning services portal, raised pre-Series A funding from media house Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd's ad-for-equity investment arm Brand Capital.
Also, online test preparation platform Oliveboard had raised an undisclosed amount in funding from India Educational Investment Fund, an early-stage impact investment fund established by Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. In February, Bangalore-based ed-tech firm Carveniche Technologies Pvt Ltd had raised funding from Calcutta Angels, Lead Angels and a bunch of other investors.
*This article has been updated to add Rise India CEO's comments.
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