upGrad acquires Harappa Education for Rs 300 Cr


Higher education platform upGrad announced that it has acquired online learning institution Harappa Education for Rs 300 crore or $38 million in a cash and stock deal.

This will be the 10th acquisition for Ronnie Screwvala-led upGrad in the past two and a half years or since January 2020.

upGrad has closed the transaction with Harappa’s shareholders which include Bodhi Tree Systems and co-founders Pramath Raj Sinha and Shreyasi Singh. Bodhi Tree Systems is a newly formed platform between Lupa Systems founder and CEO James Murdoch and Uday Shankar, the former president of The Walt Disney Company Asia Pacific.

Harappa was the first investment for Bodhi Tree Systems (via Lupa Systems) in India in which they acquired a majority stake in January 2020. The joint venture also invested $600 million in Kota-based Allen Career Institute. Entrackr was the first to report about the development in January.

“..Harappa and upGrad will anchor our purpose and conviction to create a truly wholesome learning ecosystem for lifelong learners in India and abroad, with our time-tested pedagogy, flagship programs, and rich partnerships to guarantee unmatched outcomes for our learners and clients,” said the co-founders of Harappa in a joint statement.

The development was reported by The Morning Context in April.

Based out of New Delhi, Harappa Education offers self-paced courses to address the spiralling problem of poor employability, inadequate leadership, and an ill-equipped workforce. According to the four-year-old startup, it has an active clientele of 100 mid and large-sized organisations.

While Harappa Education did not disclose its financials for FY22 yet, its operating revenue shot up 12X to Rs 4.41 crore in FY21 from Rs 35 lakh in FY20, as per annual financial statements filed with RoC. Its losses jumped 5.8X to Rs 36.75 crore in FY21 from Rs 6.37 crore during FY20.

Shruti Gupta | Entrackr

The company claims that it is likely to clock Rs 75 crore in revenue this year.

Like Byju’s and Unacademy, upGrad has also been on acquisition spree since January 2020. The company has taken over 10 startups since then which include Rekrut, Work Better Training, Gate Academy, Impartus, KnowledgeHut, Global Study Partners, Talentedge, INSOFE and most recently Wolves India for an undisclosed sum.

upGrad entered the unicorn club with a $1.2 billion valuation in August last year. Last month, it reportedly raised $225 million in a new round at a valuation of $2.25 billion. The Mumbai-based company has a learner base of over 3 million across over 100 countries and more than 300 university partners. upGrad has acquired 13 startups since its inception.

Shruti Gupta | Entrackr

The consolidation in edtech was long awaited and now considered inevitable as we have seen several startups in the segment such as Unacademy, Byju’s, Vedantu, and Toppr laying off hundreds of employees in the past few months whereas a few chose to shut down their businesses due to cash crunch. While there is no report on layoffs in upGrad, Lido, which was also backed by Screwvala, had shut down its operations for a few months.

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