Byju’s, the world’s most valuable edtech company, has made its largest acquisition so far with Osmo. The deal is opportune given the current global momentum in the sector
Edtech startup Byju’s has acquired US-based learning platform Osmo for US$ 120 million. Osmo is a brainchild of Indian origin Pramod Sharma, and develops augmented reality games for children on iPads and iPhones. Osmo will continue to operate on a standalone basis after this acquisition.
Byju’s is looking to enter the age group of 3-8 years with this acquisition. It plans to leverage play-based learning to engage kids at an early age.
Founder and CEO Byju Raveendran said in a statement, “Our partnership with Osmo will help kids acquire love for learning at an early age by introducing ‘play-based learning’. Together with Osmo, we have the critical elements needed to build an unprecedented library of engaging and entertaining educational content for a global pre-K-12 student audience.”
The acquisition is Byju’s fifth and largest till date, as the firm looks forward to rapidly expand globally. The focus will logically be on English-speaking markets like US, UK, Singapore, Canada, Malaysia and Australia.
Osmo is currently used by in around 20,000 schools and caters to around a million families, 90% of which are in the US. Earlier, Byju’s had acquired Math Adventures, TutorVista, Edurite and student assessment platform Vidyartha.
In December 2018, Byju’s had received a funding round of US$ 540 million led by Naspers Ventures along with Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and private equity firm General Atlantic. The round valued Byju’s at US$ 3.6 billion, making it the most valued edtech startup in the world in just around 3 years since its inception.
The company’s flagship product Byju’s – The Learning App currently caters to students from classes four to 12. It has around 30 million registered students and 2 million annual paid subscribers. Byju’s revenues increased by 97% yoy to reach Rs 490 crore during 2017-18, and the company is targeting revenue of Rs 1,400 crore for the current financial year.
In all, edtech firms raised US$ 695 million in 56 funding deals in 2018. A report in June 2018 by CARE titled ‘Overview of the Indian education industry’ revealed that around 36% of senior secondary students (classes IX-XII), 26% of upper primary students (classes VI-VII) and 22% of primary students opt for online coaching.
The online education industry in India is expected to grow by almost 8 times to reach US$ 1.96 billion by 2021, according to India Didactics Association. The number of paid users on the other hand is projected to grow by six times to reach 9.6 million by that year.
Globally, the edtech opportunity is truly humongous and the industry is projected to reach US$ 40.9 billion by 2022, posting a CAGR of 18.3% during 2017-22. Given Byju’s strong foundation and momentum in this sector, it is an opportune time for the company to take the global plunge.