Edtech firm Byju’s on Friday announced that it has signed football star and global sports icon Lionel “Leo” Messi as the first global brand ambassador of its social impact arm, Education For All (EFA). Messi, who plays for Paris Saint-Germain and captains the Argentinian football team, has signed an agreement with Byju’S to promote the cause of equitable education.
The company says that this association is in sync with the expanding global footprint of Byju’s and its commitment to make education accessible, equitable, and affordable for all.
Earlier this year, Byju’s became the official sponsor of the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
Football has roughly 3.5 billion fans worldwide, and Lionel Messi has a social media following of nearly 450 million. The long-term engagement, which begins as Messi embarks on his final campaign to win the FIFA World Cup 2022 as captain of Argentina’s national football team, will see him feature in campaigns promoting Byju’S Education For All. The company says that Messi will be an ideal mentor for hundreds of millions of young people around the world through his unwavering work ethic, study of the game, and love for learning.
Divya Gokulnath, co-founder of Byju’s, says, “We are honoured and excited to collaborate with Lionel Messi as our global ambassador. He is a once-in-a-generation talent whose pursuit of excellence, all-in mentality, humility, and reliability resonate deeply with Byju’S brand values. He rose from the grassroots to become one of the most successful sportspersons ever. That is the kind of opportunity that BYJU’S Education For All wants to create for the nearly 5.5 million children it currently empowers.”
It is to be noted that Byju’s has been criticised for spending huge amount of marketing money to secure FIFA sponsorship while it has announced mass layoffs. The company will let go of 2, 500 employees in the next six months under its plan of optimizing the spending cost and operational cost of the company across departments. Netizens have been calling out the company for the move and choosing to spend funds on marketing blitz instead of securing the livelihood of its employees.
Backed by investors like Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, Naspers, CPPIB, General Atlantic, Tencent, Sequoia Capital among others, Byju’s claims to have over 150 million registered learners globally, 7 million annual paid subscriptions, and a presence in 120 countries. Byju’s has onboarded strong domestic and global partners through strategic acquisitions of Osmo, EPiC, Tynker, White Hat Jr, Aakash, Great Learning, Gradeup, and GeoGebra.