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Edtech firm Leap snags $75 mn from Owl Ventures, others
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Leap, an overseas education-focused guidance and financing platform, on Wednesday said it has secured $75 million (around Rs 585 crore) in a Series D funding round led by Silicon Valley-based Owl Ventures.

The latest fundraising also saw participation from new investors Steadview Capital and Paramark Ventures, along with existing investors Jungle Ventures and Sequoia Capital India, the company said in a statement.

Since inception in 2019, the company, operated by Leap Finance Inc has raised over $150 million in equity so far. 

The San Francisco-based startup plans to deploy the fresh proceeds to expand its global footprint. 

“We continue to see tremendous opportunity in the study-abroad segment. The pace of Indians moving abroad to study only continues to accelerate almost every passing year. And so, we are eyeing international expansion to UAE and Africa, so more students coming from any country can avail Leap’s products and services," said Vaibhav Singh, co-founder of Leap.

Funding to Leap comes at a time when the edtech space has seen a major churn and funding crunch as normalcy returned to offline education in what is seen as the post-pandemic phase.

Founded three years ago by Singh and Arnav Kumar, Leap also runs LeapScholar, LeapFinance, and Yocket, offering a full-stack international student mobility platform. 

The platform offers a suite of products including international test prep like IELTS, TOEFL, SAT, etc.; admissions; visa counselling and financial offerings such as international student loans, international bank accounts, credit cards, and money remittance services. 

Leap has partnered with over 750 global universities and earlier this year, expanded its presence into West Asia. 

In terms of growth, Singh said that all the startup’s products have a study abroad community with nearly two million students on it. 

“Last year, over 60,000 students from India availed Leap’s products and moved abroad, while this year we are looking to triple the number to 175,000," he said.

Leap has garnered over $50 million in revenue with 95% of the total share from the India market.
 
"In the last 12 months, we have grown our revenue 400% and I see that growth continuing very strongly over the next 12 to 18 months. We are a business which caters to a very specific slice of the entire education ecosystem. We have got the first mover's advantage in a number of products,” Singh further said.  

In April, the company partnered with Colorado State University, to offer noted MCIS program to Indian students in a multi-geography hybrid format, at a much lower cost.

“Having built the underlying infrastructure for global student mobility, we are now able to scale rapidly across multiple dimensions,” said Arnav Kumar, co-founder of Leap.

Owl Ventures is a venture capital fund focused on the education technology market with over $2 billion in assets under management. The Silicon Valley-based firm invests in companies across the education spectrum encompassing Pre-K-12, higher education and the future of work.

“By simplifying an otherwise overwhelming process and helping students navigate all the steps of counselling, test-prep, and financing, Leap is well-positioned to support the increasing demand to go and study abroad as more countries and companies around the world are becoming further integrated into the global economy,” said Amit Patel, managing director, Owl Ventures. 

In September last year, Leap has raised $55 million (Rs 400 crore) in a Series C funding round led by Owl Ventures. 

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