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Unacademy set to cater to educational needs of other countries: CEO

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By Nishant Arora

New Delhi, Dec 12 (IANS) While several key industries across the spectrum bore the brunt of the Covid onslaught in the last 18-20 months, online education platforms grew by leaps and bounds as millions of students stayed home for remote learning. For Unacademy, it meant a 100 per cent increase in its subscription base and massive rise in engagement across its platforms.

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Founded in 2015 by Gaurav Munjal, Hemesh Singh and Roman Saini in Bengaluru, Unacademy is now valued at $3.44 billion, having raised more than $858 million (including secondary share sales) to date.

The edtech platform currently has seven lakh active subscribers, more than 60,000 educators and over 6.2 crore learners.

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“Our goal and vision from the time of our inception has been to democratise high-quality education for everyone. We do that by bringing the best educators and content on our platform and ensuring it is accessible to everyone across the country with a seamless technology experience,” Munjal, co-founder and CEO, told IANS.

“Our internal goal for the next three years is to grow 10 times from where we stand currently,” he added.

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The number of students using edtech products in India has doubled in recent years. The country’s edtech market is projected to touch $3.5 billion by 2022, according to a latest report by market research firm RedSeer and Omidyar Network India.

Unacademy has seen monthly watch time minutes scaled to an all-time high of over one billion on its platform.

It acquired two companies in 2021 — Rheo TV and TapChief. Both teams have been merged to work on Relevel (where students can take certain tests and get a job in private firms).

The total tally of mergers and acquisitions stands at 11. Unacademy Group now comprises Unacademy, Graphy, Relevel and CodeChef.

In October, Graphy acquired edtech software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform Spayee for $25 million. Spayee allows content creators to produce customised courses in the form of audio and video tutorials, PDF documents, quizzes, assignments and live classes.

Unacademy in September infused $20 million in job hiring platform Relevel.

“Our full-stack products for the end-user have proven to be very successful and we will continue to find out areas in which people need coaching from the best experts, where people need training and tap into these high-yielding areas by launching subscriptions and products for those goals,” Munjal elaborated.

“This has led us to expanding into K-12 and focusing on Relevel for next year,” he added.

The Relevel has over 35,000 test takers and over Rs 4.5 crore worth of job offers, and companies like CRED, MyGlamm and MoEngage will be hiring Relevel candidates by the end of this month

According to him, the inherent benefits of edtech, namely access to top educators and content, flexibility in learning schedules, affordability and reach, irrespective of geographical constraints has made edtech the preferred medium for learners today.

Unacademy has a high learner base in tier 2 and 3 towns and 70 per cent of its learners come from small towns.

“As a long-term goal, we plan to grow beyond the test prep space in India and cater to the educational needs of other countries,” Munjal told IANS.

Unacademy offers a diverse range of courses across categories like test preparation, K12 and others. The government exams category forms a crucial part of this pie, accounting for more than 30 per cent of total active paid users on the platform.

“In addition to UPSC, Railways, State PSC, SSC, Bank, CET, Defence, Teaching, RBI and NABARD, we are planning to expand our portfolio and add additional courses as we grow our test preparation business,” said Munjal.

(Nishant Arora can be reached at nishant.a@ians.in)



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