Lead School joins the unicorn club


EdTech’s valuation doubled in nine months by the strong growth in its operating and financial metrics. In its fifth round of funding, it has raised $100m.

Lead School is unlike any other EdTech. Unlike Byju’s or Unacademy, which focus on test-preparation of school going students, and offering executive-level courses, focus on offering tools and software for core schooling.

They have raised $100m (₹75bn) in fresh funding, with a valuation of $1.1 billion. That effectively makes it the third unicorn in 2022 and another unicorn in the Indian market.

Their Series E funding round was led by WestBridge Capital and GSV Ventures. Up till now, including the current round, they have raised $166 million in funding. This is the fifth round of institutional funding since 2017.

Its strength lies in the strong growth of its operating and financial metrics. That has led to doubling of its valuation in the last nine months. The start-up is founded by Sumeet Yashpal Mehta and Smita Deorah in 2012.

They claim that within the last four years, there was a rapid adoption of their software tools.

They plan to onboard more than 5,000 schools in 500 cities by 2022-2023 academic year-end with an annual run-rate of $80m (₹6bn). That means it will include more than 2 million students accessing their platform within the next year.

The start-up is planning to use the proceedings to fulfil its vision. Which is to provide quality affordable education to 25 million students.

That too with an annual run-rate of $1bn (₹75tn). Their immediate focus would be on product and curriculum innovation and expansion.

They are also keen on hiring top talent across functions. Their long-term plan is to go deeper into the country and serve students in lower fee schools. They also wish to expand internationally in a similar fashion.

By doing so they wish to transform schooling and tap the massive potential within the Indian youth.

They claim that with its integrated school system, they have broken new grounds, with the focus on students’ learning outcomes and their success.

It resulted not only in strong adoption, and retention by schools but also in interested investors who value returns with real impact.

Deborah Quazzo, the managing partner of GSV Ventures, in a statement, praised the start-up, who said that they are the gold standard of transforming school education in India.

Their focus on affordable schools and guarantee of success are the factors that made them successful.

Another factor of success is their unique and strong value proposition, along with an exceptional management team.

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