Toppr.com, an online test preparation platform created by Zishaan Hayath and Hemanth Goteti, co-founders of Chaupaati Bazaar which was acquired by Kishore Biyani’s Future Group in 2010, has raised $2 million (under Rs 12 crore) in a seed round of funding from Helion Venture Partners and PE firm SAIF Partners. The capital will be used to launch its marketing activities across cities and also to expand the team.
Toppr, a venture by Mumbai-based Haygot Education Pvt Ltd, was founded last year by IIT Bombay alumni Hayath and Goteti. Hayath had earlier worked at Opera Solutions. He also runs an angel investment group called Powai Lake Ventures, and has invested in companies including Olacabs.com and Housing.com. His partner Goteti had previously headed engineering at Futurebazaar. Earlier, he had also worked at Qlipmedia, Synechron and Ubiquity Inc.
Toppr is a test preparation platform for engineering, medical and also for secondary schools students. The platform covers exams like IIT JEE and BITSAT in engineering; NEET, AIIMS, AIPMT, AFMC, MT-CET and EAMCET in medical; and NTSE, NSO, NSTSE and KVPY, among others in the secondary school level. The fee starts at Rs 250 per month and can go up to Rs 6,900 per three years, depending on the course and duration selected. Toppr is also available on Android phones.
Many startups in the online education space recently elicited investors’ interest. Early this month, Mumbai-based Individual Learning Pvt Ltd that runs Embibe.com, a test prep portal specialising in engineering entrance exams, raised $4 million from early-stage investor Kalaari Capital and newly formed venture fund Lightbox. Last month, Learning Edge Academy of Professionals Pvt Ltd (LEAP), an e-learning, educational technology platform, raised an undisclosed amount in an angel round from Sarthi Angel Venture Foundation (SAVF). Prior to that, education products and services startup Skyfi Labs Pvt Ltd raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Chennai Angels, with participation from Spark Capital.
Toppr is Helion’s seventh investment since January 1, after Jivox Software, MySmartPrice.com, LinguaNext Technologies, IndiaHomes, RapidValue.
SAIF Partners India, which has invested in large firms like Just Dial, Homeshop18, Firstcry.com, Makemytrip.com, PropTiger.com and One97 Communications, has recently started making early-stage investments. With the funds’ seed initiative to back companies at early stage, it will make equity investments worth $500,000 to $2 million.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)