Technology has brought sweeping changes in all aspects of the world. There’s hardly any field or area that hasn’t touched or impacted by it. As in any other sector, it has marked a space for itself in the education sector as well. In fact, technology has changed the face and unlocked the power of education beyond imagination in recent times.
Education technology has become a global phenomenon. A recent report by global education market intelligence firm HolonIQ has projected edtech market to grow at 11% per annum, to $341 billion by 2025. With population growth, which is expected to be 2.7 billion students worldwide by 2035, posing a key challenge for the education sector, there will be an ever increasing need for the implementation of technological innovations in the educational processes to enable better decision plans, greater responsiveness to customer demands, and faster turnaround times.
From early childhood education to language learning, online learning, study tools and course materials, edtech has indeed opened up a huge market for both technology and education providers. Recognizing the potential, several hundreds of edtech companies have come up from across the world with cutting-edge technologies and solutions to help meet the challenges and bridge the gap in the education sector. The edtech space has also caught the attention of opportunity-seeking investors across the world. Many investors have pumped in millions of funds in various edtech startups to help them develop or enhance the products and services and accelerate their businesses.
In this article, we bring you some of the most funded edtech startups from across the world in 2019. Take a look!
Byju’s – About $513 million
According to Crunchbase, Byju’s has raised about $513 million in 2019 alone in its Series F funding round. The firm first raised capital in the round in December 2018, giving it a valuation of $3.5 billion. It then raised twice in March, and then the fourth round in July, bringing the company’s valuation to $5.5 billion, an unprecedented jump of $2 billion within a single round. The round was led by investors such as Naspers Ventures, General Atlantic, and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and others. Launched in 2015, the Bengaluru-based online tutoring firm is today the most valued edtech company in the world.
Guild Education - $157 million
Denver-based B Corporation certified edtech company Guild Education has raised $157 million in a Series D funding round in November. The round was led by venture capital firm General Catalyst. This funding round has made Guild becomes the latest female-led as well as edtech company to hit $1 billion valuation. Founded in 2015, the company focuses on creating opportunity for America’s workforce, especially those without a high school diploma or college degree, through education.
KnowBox - $150 million
KnowBox has raised $150 million in a Series D round led by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba in July. The company also raised $100 million in its Series C round in 2018, led by Yunfeng Capital. Founded in 2014, the Beijing-based startup offers two main learning services – private teaching and family counseling. The startup has changed its brand name to Xiaohe Keji or SmallBox Technology.
iLearning Education Group - undisclosed Series D+ in November and $140 million in April
iLearning Education Group (Formerly Gaosi Education Group) has obtained a strategic Series D+ round of financing from internet giant Tencent in November, 2019. While the company did not disclose the amount of this round, it raised a record-breaking $140 million in its Series D round led by Warburg Pincus in April this year. The round has catapulted the startup to become a unicorn in the edtech industry. Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Beijing, the company provides both B2B and B2C educational and training services via online as well as offline.
Coursera - $103 million
Online education giant Coursera has raised an additional $103 million of investment in a Series E equity round in April. The round was led by Australia-based SEEK Group. Coursera provides universal access to the world’s best education, partnering with top universities and organizations to offer courses online.
Kenzie Academy - $107.8 million ($100 million in November and $7.8 million in October)
Kenzie Academy has raised $100 million investment from Community Investment Management (CIM), an institutional impact investment manager based in San Francisco, in November. Prior to this, the Indianapolis-based company has also raised $7.8 million in a Series A funding round led by Rethink Education in October. A college alternative, Kenzie provides job-focused technology training to the Middle Americans.
Compass Education - $60 million
After bootstrapping for eight years, the Melbourne-based edtech startup has bagged $60 million in funding from private equity firm Advent Partners. According to report, the round was closed in August last year, however, due to no media circus and no announcement, the news about the funding came to light only this year, in November. Officially incorporated in 2010, Compass provides a one-stop shop for school management, providing a platform to make life as easy as possible for teachers in house, and to allow for easy communication with parents. The startup now looks to expand throughout Australia and beyond with the investment.
Codemao - $57 million
Shenzhen-based Codemao, an online programming education platform for children, has raised RMB400 million ($57 million) in a Series C financing round led by private equity fund Russia-China Investment Fund (RCIF) and participated by several other investors, including Hillhouse Capital, SAIF Partners, Everbright New Economy Fund, etc. Founded in 2015, Codemao is the most popular programming education brand for children and teenagers in China.
Hetao 101 - $50 million
Hetao 101 has raised $50 million in a Series B funding round led by investment firm Huaxing Growth Capital under China Renaissance and Hillhouse Capital Group, and participated by others like Zhongyuan Capital, We Capital, Source Code Capital and XVC. Founded in 2017, the Beijing-based startup provides online programming classes and course products for children aged 6 to 12.
Unacademy - $50 million
India’s largest learning platform Unacademy has raised a $50 million Series D funding round from Steadview Capital, Sequoia India, Nexus Venture Partners, and Blume Ventures in June this year. There are reports that the company is looking to raise $100 million Series E round and in talks with General Capital and GGV Capital for the round. Founded in 2015, the platform currently has over 10,000 registered educators and 13 million learners.
Vedantu - $42 million
Vedantu raised $42 million in a Series C funding round led by Tiger Global and WestBridge Capital in August this year. Existing investors, including Accel, Omidyar India, TAL Education, Prince Maximilian of Liechtenstein, and co-founders of Vedantu, also participated in the round. Founded in 2011, Vedantu provides personalized learning by using technology to bring teachers and students on a single platform to enable live learning between them.
A Cloud Guru - $33 million
Australian enterprise training startup A Cloud Guru has secured $33 million (AU$46.8 million) in a funding round led by US growth equity firm Summit Partners, and participated by Aussie VC AirTree Ventures and existing investor Elephant. Founded in 2015 by two Aussie brothers, the startup uses interactive and online learning to help IT professionals re-skill in cloud computing.
Amboss - €30 million
Berlin-based medical education platform AMBOSS raised €30 million in a Series B funding round led by Partech and Target Global, with support from existing investors Cherry Ventures, Wellington Partners and Holtzbrinck Digital. Founded in 2013, AMBOSS has grown from an exam preparation tool for German medical students to a global platform for doctors to learn the latest medical knowledge. Its platform is currently used by more than half a million users to apply the latest medical knowledge.
Duolingo - $30 million
Pittsburgh-based language learning app Duolingo raised $30 million in a Series F funding round led by Google’s parent company Alphabet’s investment arm Capital G. The round has made the startup to become the first Pittsburgh-based tech start-ups to reach unicorn status, bringing its new valuation to $1.5 billion. Founded in 2011, Duolingo enables anyone to learn any language for free. It is the world’s most popular language learning platform.
Brainly - $30 million
Brainly raised $30 million in a Series C funding round led by Naspers, with participation from Runa Capital and Manta Ray. Founded in 2009, the Polish edtech startup provides a platform where middle and high school students can ask each other for homework help.
Hexiaoxiang - $28 million
Hexiaoxiang raised $28 million in a Series B funding round led by Sinnovation Ventures, Bertelsmann Asia Investment (BAI), and TAL. Founded in 2017, the Chinese online education platform provides quality cultural education program for children aged between 3 and 12.
Sparx - €22 million
Sparx raised €22 million from Oxygen House, a dynamic group of companies that invest in various projects. Founded in 2010, the Exeter-based startup uses machine learning, personalized content, and data analytics to help teachers more effective and improve learning outcomes for students in math.
Besides the above, who all raised $20 million and above, there are many others like Riiid - $18 million (South Korea), Mathpresso - $14.5 million (Seoul, South Korea), Pathstream - $12 million (San Francisco, US), Literati - $12 million (Austin, US), WhiteHat Jr - $10 million (Mumbai, India), and YOLA - $10 million (Vietnam) that raised significant amount of fund in 2019. Those startups that raised $10 million and below have been left out in this post, as there are quite many of them.
Education technology has truly become a global phenomenon. No wonder, this trend of increasing deal size shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, the news of funding keeps coming almost every day from across the globe. Keep tuning in as we update them.