Online higher education platform upGrad is the latest entrant to the Indian unicorn club after it closed a total of $185 million in a funding round, putting it at a market valuation of $1.2 billion. UpGrad has raised its third external funding of $25 million from the IIFL group.
In late April, the firm got its maiden external funding when the Singaporean investment giant Temasek Holdings invested $120 million. The World Bank Group arm International Finance Corporation chipped in with $40 million in the same week, valuing it at $850 million.
“We are very focused on our path to being in the top three-five companies globally in edtech and serving the one billion workforces across the age group of 18-60. We are pleased with the investor interest ever since we opened up for a fundraise and had our maiden raise from Temasek, followed by IFC and IIFL in the last 60 days,” said Ronnie Screwvala, Chairperson and Co-founder, upGrad.
upGrad, co-founded by ex-media baron Ronnie Screwvala, Phalgun Kompalli, Mayank Kumar and Ravijot Chugh, by investing just over Rs 170 crore in 2015, said in a statement that with the $25 million investment from IIFL Group, it has so far raised $185 million in equity capital from external investors.
“We will announce further updates on M&As, and unlocking value as they unfold. Yes, the last value was at $1.2 billion, but as I keep saying, we are not a fan of the tag name unicorn. For us, it is only a means to a much larger goal,” added Ronnie Screwvala.
Recent reports suggested that the company is in advanced talks for a $400 million fundraise at a valuation of $4 billion. The edtech company has earmarked $250 million for mergers and acquisitions (M&As) over the next seven-nine months, as it strengthens its non-linear growth strategy.
Meanwhile, upGrad is set to cross the $500 million annual revenue run rate by March 2022 and is looking to raise close to $400 million at a $4 billion valuation. As per industry estimates, there are 53 unicorns currently in India, with a tentative valuation of INR 1.4 lakh crore.