upGrad Acquires Harappa Education to Establish Leadership in Enterprise Learning in India

upGrad acquires Harappa Education

Higher EdTech unicorn upGrad has acquired online learning institution Harappa Education for Rs 300 crore (US$38 million) in a cash and stock deal.

upGrad closed the transaction with present Harappa shareholders – Bodhi Tree Systems and co-founders Pramath Raj Sinha and Shreyasi Singh, according to a news release. Bodhi Tree Systems is a newly-formed platform between Lupa Systems founder and CEO James Murdoch and Uday Shankar, the former president of The Walt Disney Company Asia Pacific. Harappa was the first investment for Bodhi Tree Systems via Lupa Systems in India in which they acquired a majority stake in January 2020.

With the acquisition, James Murdoch, Uday Shankar, Pramath Raj, and Shreyasi Singh have joined upGrad’s cap table.

Co-founded by Pramath Raj Sinha, who is also the Founding Dean of the Indian School of Business (ISB) and the Founder Trustee of Ashoka University, and Shreyasi Singh, ex-editor of India Inc, Harappa Education offers self-paced courses to address the spiraling problem of poor employability, inadequate leadership, and an ill-equipped workforce. The New Delhi-based online learning institution has an active clientele of 100 mid and large-sized organisations.

Harappa claims that it is likely to clock Rs 75 crore in revenue this year.

Commenting on the development, Ronnie Screwvala & Mayank Kumar, Co-founders of upGrad, said in a joint statement,

"Similar to the integrated approach that we have been able to achieve in the B2C segment, we intend to offer a complete suite of products to our enterprise partners. A combination of upskilling courses along with these critical skills that Harappa has to offer would set us apart. We see strong demand from our clients and with Harappa coming in, we believe we'll be able to grow exponentially within the segment as we cross-leverage the synergies. Pramath and Shreyasi come with a strong business legacy, which in turn, further fuels our ambition of becoming the global EdTech leader."

Pramath Raj Sinha and Shreyasi Singh, Co-founders of Harappa Education, said,

"Consolidations get like-minded entrepreneurs together to build powerful, inspired formations. We are delighted to expand on the immense potential of our unique curriculum of social, cognitive, and behavioral skills, with Ronnie and Mayank, who have created such an exciting global company. As a combined force, Harappa and upGrad will anchor our purpose and conviction to create a truly wholesome learning ecosystem for lifelong learners in India and abroad, with our time-tested pedagogy, flagship programs, and rich partnerships to guarantee unmatched outcomes for our learners and clients."

upGrad is a pioneer in the online education revolution focused on powering career success for a global workforce of over 1.3 billion. It has a learner base of over 3 million across 100+ countries and more than 300 University partners, and a robust enterprise business with a client base of 1000 companies worldwide.

With Harappa’s acquisition, upGrad has acquired 10 startups since 2020, which include Rekrut, Work Better, Gate Academy, Impartus, KnowledgeHut, Global Study Partners, Talentedge, and INSOFE. The latest acquisition comes a few days after upGrad Rekrut, a subsidiary of upGrad, acquired recruitment and staffing firm Wolves India for an undisclosed amount.

About the Author
Author: Stephen Soulunii
Stephen Soulunii No more a student, but love to learn. Not a teacher, but care about how students are taught. Not an educator, but want everyone to be educated. Not a social worker, but desire to see change. Not a reformer, but always want to see a better world. The author believes that only sound education can bring a better future, better world and technology can help achieve a lot in this field.

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