Bharti Airtel has made its first bet in the education technology space.
The telecom giant has acquired a 10% stake in Mumbai-based edtech startup Lattu Media, which operates a kids learning app called Lattu Kids.
The investment was made as part of Airtel Startup Accelerator Programme. While the financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed, Bharti Airtel, in a regulatory filing, said the acquisition of the equity shares of investee company was done at mutually agreed pre-money enterprise valuation.
Founded in 2016 by Vivek Lath, Vivek Bhutyani and Arvind Kumar, Lattu Kids offers digital learning tools for children. It focuses on improving English vocabulary, reading skills, and Math skills for children under 10 years of age through fun learning videos and games. The Lattu Kids structured app programme prepares kids for elementary schooling and builds a strong foundation of listening, speaking, reading, and comprehension skills.
Issuing a statement on the investment, Bharti Airtel said,
“It is estimated that in India edtech will become a $2 billion-plus industry by 2021. The investment will enable Airtel to add edtech to its premium digital content portfolio and give distribution scale to quality learning material from Lattu Kids.”
The telecom major claims to have over 160 million monthly active users across its digital platforms – Airtel Thanks app, Airtel Xstream app, and Wynk Music.
Commenting on the funding, Vivek Bhutyani, Co-founder and CEO of Lattu Kids, said,
“Our vision with Lattu Kids is to impact learning outcomes for young children in Nursery to Grade 2, and lead this category in India by using digital content, gamification and technology. With Airtel, we have found an equally passionate partner and our synergies in this space will allow us to scale Lattu to millions of kids in India across classes and make it a much-loved home grown edtech brand.”
Lattu Kids claims to have successfully reached over 27 million kids and served more than 200 schools across India in the past two years. The startup has a library of over 1500 fun learning videos, featuring over 20 characters.
Adarsh Nair, Chief Product Officer, Bharti Airtel, said,
“At Airtel, we aspire to support the growth of the startup ecosystem through our digital platforms. And now more than ever, online education is a critical need for millions of young children who do not have access to regular classrooms. We believe that Lattu Kids can make a positive impact in the space of online education and are excited to have them in our accelerator and partner in their growth.”
Lattu Kids becomes the fourth company to join the Airtel Startup Accelerator Programme after conversational-AI tech startup Voicezen, software development startup Vahan, and logistics tech startup Quikmile.
Airtel had launched its startup accelerator programme in October 2019 to support the growth of early-stage Indian tech startups.