Byju’s said to be in talks with lenders for $1 billion funding

According to persons familiar with the situation, Byju’s, India’s most valuable company, is in talks with lenders to acquire more than $1 billion in acquisition financing as the online education provider looks to aggressively grow its business.

The Bangalore-based industry leader is in talks with banks, including Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan Chase & Co., about acquiring another ed-tech startup, according to people who asked not to be identified because the information is not public. They did not reveal the purchase target and stated that the specifics of the transaction and money are still being worked out.

Byju’s, founded by former instructor Byju Raveendran, has been on a buying spree in the United States and worldwide in recent years, acquiring firms that provide coding lessons, professional development courses, and test prep programs for tough Indian examinations. Bloomberg claimed earlier this year that the business was valued at $22 billion after raising funds this year and is planning an initial public offering.

Byju’s and JPMorgan’s representatives declined to comment on the loan. A Morgan Stanley spokesman did not respond promptly to an email requesting a comment.

According to information on the platform’s website, the app has been downloaded more than 150 million times, and clients spend an average of 71 minutes per day using it. Think & Learn Pvt. It is backed by significant worldwide investors such as Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg’s Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, Naspers Ltd., Tiger Global Management, and Sequoia Capital India.

After schools and tutoring centers were forced to close their doors due to the Covid-19 pandemic, forcing parents, teachers, and students to seek alternative learning resources, the popularity of online classes soared in the country of nearly 1.4 billion people with one of the world’s youngest populations. Byju’s has also expanded its product offering to include one-on-one tutoring with teachers in India and worldwide, tutoring school pupils in nations such as the United States, United Kingdom, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, and Australia.

BYJU’s app was created by Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd, a firm founded in 2011 by Byju Raveendran, Divya Gokulnath, and a group of students. Byju, a professional engineer, has been tutoring kids in mathematics since 2006. Initially, the company concentrated on providing online video-based learning programs for the K-12 market as well as competitive exams. The company first appeared in the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 India and Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific rankings in 2012, and it has been there ever since.