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Edtech startup Doubtnut expands its ESOP pool


Edtech startup Doubtnut has expanded its ESOP pool by adding nearly 293 fresh equity options. With this, Doubtnut has joined the likes of Aye Finance, Lendingkart, Oyo, Byju’s, Pine Labs and ShareChat who have also swelled their ESOPs pool recently.

Doubtnut has passed a special resolution to amend its current ESOP scheme and increase the size of the ESOP pool by 293 options, regulatory filings show. The Gurugram-based startup’s total ESOP pool is now worth Rs 27.3 crore.

The addition of fresh options has come when Doubtnut is in the market to raise Series B round as its acquisition talks with Byju’s had fallen apart over valuation. Byju’s had proposed to acquire Doubtnut in the range of $130 million but it reduced the valuation by $40 million to $80-90 million in the final offer.

Entrackr had exclusively reported the development on October 31.

Since its entry in the first cohort of Sequoia’s accelerator program Surge, Doubtnut had managed to scale quickly. However, the company didn’t grow as much as its peers in 2020: Byju’s Unacademy and Vedantu. While the latter three managed to raise back to back rounds, Doubutnut raised only $15 million this year. Tencent led its Series A round whereas Sequoia Capital, Omidyar Network and Waterbridge Ventures were Doubtnut’s early backers.

Founded by Tanushree Nagori and Aditya Shankar, Doubtnut offers free video solutions to users who send screenshots of their questions on the platform. The three-year-old startup’s core audience is the K12 segment and also competitive exam seekers including JEE and NEET.

The trend of expanding ESOPs pool by Indian startups has increased multifold in the past two-three years. According to Fintrackr’s data, over two dozen companies have either allotted, bought back, expanded or introduced ESOP plans in 2020. The list includes Paytm, Swiggy, Unacademy, Oyo, Zomato, Byju’s, Pine Labs, ShareChat, Shuttl, Fleetx and Jodo.

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