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Unacademy’s early-stage backer Waterbridge Ventures makes 5X returns


Online learning platform Unacademy seems to have become a high return platform for both new and existing investors.

Sequoia Capital, SAIF Partners and Nexus Venture Partners, which led Series C funding round in Unacademy with an investment of $21 million, also bought stakes of Waterbridge Ventures and gave exit to the early stage investor in the Bengaluru-based company.

With the exit, the venture fund earned internal returns of close to 150 per cent and five times its investment in the company.

During the Series C round, the online learning company was valued about $100 million.

WaterBridge Ventures invested $1 million in the company in 2016. The early stage investor’s funding in the company was its first transaction from its $30 million worth maiden fund. WaterBridge is believed to have held about a shade less than 5 per cent stake in Unacademy.

Founded by Munjal, Roman Saini, Hemesh Singh and Sachin Gupta as an educational YouTube channel – Unacademy claims to have over 2 million subscribers on its YouTube channel and has a repository of over 50,000 online video lessons.

In the past months, there has been an increase in the secondary share sale by companies such as Ola, Zomato, BigBasket, Lenskart, Paytm, and Policybazaar. They have offered high returns to their early investors.

This year alone, secondary share purchases worth $710 million were recorded across 7 consumer Internet companies. Paytm, Ola, Lenskart, Zomato, BigBasket, Pine Labs and Flipkart offered a partial exit to their investors, founders as well as employees.

Early this year, Ant Financials acquired Info Edge’s $50 million worth share in Zomato. Besides, Growth Story diluted $65 million shares in BigBasket in a secondary transaction which were purchased by Alibaba.

Other early-stage investors in companies such as Lenskart and Pine Labs have also witnessed high returns in similar kinds of deals where late investors bought their stakes giving the former multi-returns.

The development was first reported by ET.

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