Published: 9/25/2020

Good morning and TGIF! Got some consumer social & edtech news today covering two Indian unicorns (or maybe one soonicorn?) in ShareChat & Unacademy:

  • https://tcrn.ch/2G4CYqD: ShareChat raises $40M in a Pre-Series E round
  • ➡️ In a round everyone presumed was coming, ShareChat has raised an additional $40M in what they are calling a Pre-Series E round from Pawan Munjal (Chief Executive Hero MotoCorp), Twitter, SAIF Partners, Lightspeed Ventures & India Quotient.

    ➡️ I think this is potentially just a fancy way of saying its a bridge round as ShareChat is expected to raise a larger round ($100M+) in the next few months, which would make the homegrown social media platform a unicorn.

    ➡️ ShareChat was probably the company who benefited the most from the ban of Chinese apps as the company was battling Helo (ByteDance's copy cat of ShareChat) head-on which had somewhat slowed down the growth of ShareChat's main app. Moreover, ShareChat launched a short-video app right after the ban, called Moj, which seems to be doing much better than their Indian counterparts.

    ➡️ ShareChat claims that Moj already has 80M MAUs who spend 34 minutes on the platform every single day and the ShareChat app itself has amassed 160M MAUs (who spend 31 minutes on the app every day). I think it's quite incredible that Moj has already reached 50% of ShareChat's monthly active users (I assume there's a decent overlap which would mean several tens of millions are spending close to an hour on ShareChat's properties).

    ➡️ With the absence of Tik Tok, consumers have been flocking to apps to fill their time but some of the early copycats probably don't have too robust an ad-platform yet. I think this is where ShareChat (and probably MX TakaTak) will stand out over the rest.

    ➡️ While these numbers can't be exactly verified independently, it's quite amazing if true. An app was able to scale from 0 to 80M active users within months (that's like ~15% of India's online population).

    2. https://bit.ly/305O1qB: Unacademy acquires UPSC test prep platform Coursavy

    ➡️ All of the EdTech cos have been on a tear lately but I think there's a couple in particular that have been taking advantage of this "crisis"- BYJUs with all the fundraising & Unacademy with all the acquisitions.

    ➡️ This is their 5th acquisition this year itself (no clue who heads their M&A and Corp. Dev team but that sounds like a lot of fun) including PrepLadder, Mastree, Codechef & Kreatryx. While it seems like BYJUs is mostly focussed on its core product & its new coding vertical (White Hat Jr), Unacademy seems to be expanding in all direction with all these acquisitions & other incubations (Graphy)

    ➡️ With this acquisition, the company plans to strengthen its position in the UPSC test prep market. They also plan to conduct bi-monthly scholarship tests for aspirants & conduct knowledge sharing summits from the field.

    ➡️ The company was founded in 2019 by Vimal Singh Rathore but I couldn't find any information about past funding history (so they might be bootstrapped so far) and now Coursavy educators will teach on Unacademy & mentor existing educators on the platform.

    Feedback & ❤️ always appreciated BONUS (Tweet of the day): https://twitter.com/pacificleo/status/1309094508911525889

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