Byju's, India’s largest online learning firm, on August 5 said it has acquired WhiteHat Jr., a startup focussing on online coding classes for kids, continuing the dealmaking frenzy in the ed-tech space.
The deal gives Byju's an entry into a promising and early segment in Indian education.
While it did not specify the deal value, a person in the know said it is a $300 million all-cash deal.
Moneycontrol had first reported on July 3 that Byju's was in talks to acquire WhiteHat Jr.
Online coding classes have become the newest battle for supremacy for startups, with 1.5 year old WhiteHat Jr. having a revenue run-rate of $150 million at the time of its sale, the startup said.
Founder and CEO of WhiteHat Jr. Karan Bajaj will continue to lead the company.
"Technology is at the centre of every human interaction today and we had set out to create a coding curriculum that was being delivered live and connected students and teachers like never before. Integration with a visionary company such as BYJU’S will help take this idea to new heights and help unleash the remarkable creative potential of kids at a global scale," Bajaj said.
The deal also gives an early exit to WhiteHat's investors- venture firms Nexus Venture Partners, Owl Ventures and Omidyar Network.
WhiteHat currently offers live online coding classes to children in the age group of 6 to 14 and helps them build commercial-ready games, animations and apps. Its subscription packages are priced between Rs 6,000 to Rs 1 lakh, depending on the number of classes. It currently offers three packages of 8, 48 and 144 classes, respectively.
While the company began with Indian school-going students as its target group, it has also found traction in the US, bagging over 20,000 paid subscribers as of June 2020.
Byju's, which started out by providing online classes for students from kindergarten to Class 12 (K12), it recently ventured into live classes, test preparation and entrance exams as well.
"WhiteHat Jr. is the leader in the live online coding space. Karan has proven his mettle as an exceptional founder and the credit goes to him and his team for creating coding programs that are loved by kids. Under his leadership the company has achieved phenomenal growth in India and the US in a short span of time," said Byju Raveendran, Founder and CEO, Byju's.
Online education has become the hottest sector during the COVID-19 pandemic as students under lockdown have taken to online learning platforms at unprecedented levels. Companies like Byju's, Unacademy, Vedantu and WhiteHat Jr. have doubled and tripled growth in the last three months.