From offline coaching classes in 2007-08 to an online model in 2015, Byju’s has come a long way. The Bengaluru-based edtech major was valued close to $17 billion during its last funding round in June this year. “We have managed to build the business because of ambition, skill and access to capital. And fortunately we have been able to get all of them. It wasn’t easy though. It was very difficult to raise capital in the early days,” Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO, Byju’s tells Fortune India. “I had to convince and make investors [global funds] understand the space and business opportunity. Byju’s is not a cut, copy, and paste model. So I had to explain to the investors about the potential [of the business],” he says.
According to data from Tracxn, Byju’s raised approximately $1.7 billion of funding so far this year. In 2020, Byju’s raised about $1.4 billion in funding. “It becomes easier once you consistently pack a high valuation with value creation. Once you build that reputation then it becomes much easier,” adds Raveendran. “I don’t want to say that they [investors] blindly trust me but to a large extent I have earned that,” he laughs. In the last few years, Byju’s have been backed by a string of marquee global investors including UBS Group AG, Silver Lake, General Atlantic, Tiger Global Management, former Wall Street securities analyst Mary Meeker’s venture capital firm Bond Capital, Israeli-Russian billionaire Yuri Milner’s DST Global, among others.