Published: 7/7/2020

Good morning! Anmol here today and it's Tuesday. The Media v Tech battle continues to heat up and there was also some consolidation in the food delivery space with Uber Eats acquiring Postmates (As a Pastmates, I am quite happy my equity might be worth something).

Coming to the day's news, Sequoia India has announced two new funds & Unacademy Group has acquired two EdTech companies.

  • https://tcrn.ch/2ZIB2Ku: Sequoia announces a new Venture & Growth fund
  • ➡️ Sequoia Capital India announced that it raised $1.35B from Limited Partners across two new funds- a $525 million venture fund and a $825 million growth fund- to be deployed across India and South East Asia.

    ➡️ The firm has been very active in 2019 (& 2020) investing across multiple stages and also focussing more closely on the seed stage with its accelerator program Surge. It is also probably one of the few funds in India that have returned some amount of cash returns to its LPs through partial exits through OYO primarily.

    ➡️ 2020 has been a particularly good year for the firm as it owns stakes in some of India's largest EdTech companies- Unacademy, BYJUs & Doubtnut all of whom have seen tremendous growth once the lockdown in India started.

    ➡️Sequoia has probably been India's top tier fund (as it has been in the United States for decades), and it's interesting now that the fund has separate funds for all stages of the companies it supports- Seed, Venture & Growth.

    ➡️ Sequoia has backed several unicorns (11 in India + SE Asia to be precise) including the likes of Zomato, BYJUs, GoJek and soonicorns which are experiencing hyper growth like Razorpay, Khatabook, Unacademy and the next couple of years will hopefully deliver more returns for the fund and its LPs

    2. https://bit.ly/2C8K2R5 ($): Unacademy to acquire Mastree & PrepLadder

    ➡️ From Sequoia to one of Sequoia's portfolio company, Unacademy is in the news today. Unacademy is set to acquire two EdTech companies- Mastree & PrepLadder- for an undisclosed amount.

    ➡️ Both companies are fairly small and likely haven't raised too much capital yet. Mastree is an online tutoring company in the K-12 space (specifically Math & Science for 6-8th grade) started by IIT Bombay grads, one of whom worked at Blume Ventures (one of Unacademy's investors).

    ➡️ Meanwhile PrepLadder was founded in 2015 and helps students prepare competitive medical exams. There seems to be a definite amount of consolidation in the EdTech space recently with the biggest companies scooping up early stage cos/cos with some scale.

    ➡️ Just in the last couple of months, we've seen Unacademy acquire CodeChef & Kreatryx; BYJUs been in acquisition talks with Doubtnut & WhiteHat Jr; and Vedantu invest (with rights to acquire) Instasolv.

    ➡️ It seems like these companies are looking towards adjacent products & markets which will help the company scale and grow, and I assume a lot of these deals will grow with potentially some in the future resulting in a couple of Indian EdTech brands (my money is on BYJUs and Unacademy).

    Feedback & ❤️ always appreciated BONUS (Tweet of the day): https://twitter.com/kumarharsha2212/status/1280002464805052417

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