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Byjus: The Purple Unicorn

Can you believe that the world's most valuable education company is just a decade old? Valued at USD 16.5 Billion, Byju's is an Indian multinational educational technology company headquartered in Bangalore. The firm was founded in 2011 by Byju Raveendran and Divya Gokulnath. Byju’s gained popularity and evolved into a massive organization through Think and Learn Pvt Ltd in 2011. It is a platform that aspires to educate students to learn and develop exceptional academic ideas via the app and understand them better when compared to traditional school learning. This app specializes in mathematics and science that helps kids all over the country to fall in love with learning and master all the subjects and topics that it offers.

Byjus Business Model:

Byju's business and revenue model runs on a subscription-based method and helps students in accomplishing their academic goals. It's a premium educational model wherein a number of the primary academic content is made available to students for free. However, to gain access to more detailed and exclusive content, users have to opt for a paid subscription. According to a Dec 19 report published by Economic Times, Byjus had accumulated more than 40 million registered customers and 2.8 million paid subscribers.

Byju's Acquisitions:

In 2019 Byju's business model multiplied to Rs. 1341 crore from Rs. 490 crores in the preceding monetary year and stated a net profit of rupees 20 crores. For FY 2020, Byju's aspired to multiply its revenue to rupees 3000 crores considering the fiscal year of 2019 that proved profitable for them. They managed to come close to that target and rake in 2800 crore in revenue. Byju's raised millions of dollars in funding and has put that to use by going on an acquisition spree. It has been successful in acquiring many companies like Math Adventures, Tutor Vista, Edurite, Vidyartha, and U. S based Osmo.

Byju's is the country's highest-valued start-up and has also acquired professional and higher education platforms with great learning for $600 million in a cash and stock deal. In July 2021, Byju's land US-based Epic for $500 million to boost its overseas business. Great learning is now the Bengaluru-based company's second-biggest acquisition which is worth billions!

Byjus has spent more than $2 billion on acquisitions over the last six months, consolidating its place as a behemoth in the education sector. It has also earmarked dollar 400 million of investment into the professional scaling and lifelong learning segment, taking the total commitment for this vertical to $1 billion.

Here's are Byju's major purchases in the recent past:

1. Great Learning ($600 million)

Singapore-headquartered Great Learning was acquired by Byju's for $600 million on Monday and the ed-tech major will now invest an additional $400 million to strengthen its position in the professional and Higher Education segment. Great Learning will continue to operate as an independent unit in Byju's group.

2. White Hat Jr. ($300 million)

In August last year, Byju's had acquired White Hat Junior for $300 million making it one of the greatest and the biggest deals in the education and Technology Sector. Byju's was looking to provide coding programs for kids, an area of expertise for White Hat Jr.

L-R: Karan Bajaj, founder of WhiteHat Jr & Byju Raveendran, Co-founder Byju’s.

3. Epic ($500 million)

In July 2021, Byju's accepted and acquired US-based kid's digital reading platform Epic in a $500 million deal. Epic caters tso all the kids aged 12 and under and the acquisition will help broaden Byju's footprint in the US ed-tech industry providing access to Epic's global user base that is said to have doubled over the last year and now comprises more than 2 million teachers and 50 million children.

Revenue Model:

Byju's app offers a facility that includes learning models for school and college-going students as well as students preparing for entrance and competitive exams. The videos are created by featuring an instructor who simplifies concepts using audio-visual tools on the screen. These courses are accessible to students after they pay the necessary course subscription fees. Students can also download recorded lectures and watch them offline. Byju's has also launched a new vertical called Career Labs that provides profile building and standardized test training for graduate programs. If you look closely, Byju's is looking to become that one company associated with your education from your childhood till the end of your professional life!

Byju employs teachers, coaches, and trainers to develop quality content and create an intellectual property (IPR) base. It has expanded its footprint in every possible domain in the education sector and its naked ambition is visible for everyone to see. It is on a rapid growth and expansion spree and is using the funding it has received from multiple rounds of raising money. In March of this year, it secured $460m in a Series F funding round and in the next month, B Capital, Baron Funds, and XN invested $1 billion in Byju's. While the growth story of the company is impressive, it has received its fair share of criticism and backlash for its aggressive sales practices and expensive courses. Only time will tell if Byju's will truly consolidate itself as the leader in the education industry, not just in India, but around the world.




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