On Friday, a leading startup news portal Entrackr reported that Vedantu is the latest acquisition target of Byju’s. The news portal claimed that Byju’s is planning to buy the Pune based startup for $800Mn in a cash and stock deal. The report did not come as a surprise for many people as Byju’s has been on acquisition spree this year. Byju’s aggressive acquisition spree has unambiguously brought forth Its monopolistic ambitions.
However, barely hours after Entrackr’s report went live, Vedantu came out in open to refute the acquisition claims made by the news portal. The company labelled the report as absolutely false and baseless.
Talking exclusively to Hindustan Times, Vedantu’s CEO & Co-founder Vamsi Krishna said that the company is not up for a sale. He, in fact, added that the company is in the middle of finalizing a new funding round and new round will be announced pretty soon. Although Mr. Krishna did not shed light on financial details of the new funding round, rumors suggest that nearly $100Mn is likely to be raised at a valuation of $1Bn.
If Vedantu does manage to breach the $1 Bn valuation mark then it will become the newest unicorn, precisely the 20th unicorn of the current year. The company had last raised $100Mn in Series D round in June last year at a valuation of around $600-700 Mn.
Reposing faith in Vedantu’s long term growth, Krishna said in the HT interview that “We didn’t start Vedantu to get acquired or to chase high valuations. There were several offers last year that we haven’t considered.”
Based on the above quote, some experts have inferred that Byju’s may have given an offer to Vedantu last year. But sources, cited by several news portals, claimed that currently no acquisition offer is being considered by Vedantu.
Mr. Krishna also took to Twitter to refute the acquisition claims.
It must be noted that Vedantu and Byju’s have a common investor in the form of Tiger Global. But Tiger Global’s possible role in pushing Vedantu for an acquisition talks with Byju’s looks a little misplaced given that Tiger Global still does not own a seat in Vedantu’s board of directors team. That said, Byju’s untamed monopolistic ambitions that have recently resulted in the acquisition of its direct competitors Toppr and Great Learning implied that Vedantu is equally in its radar.
However, Vedantu flatly refusing the acquisition talks has meant that Byju’s will continue to have to deal with some semblance of competition. This fact, by the way, bodes well for India’s nascent edtech sector.