Toprankers, an edtech platform for careers beyond engineering and medical, on Monday said it has raised $4 million (Rs 31.2 crore) from consumer-focused venture capital firm Sixth Sense Ventures.
The startup, operated by Toprankers Edtech Solutions Pvt. Ltd will use the fresh proceeds to improve its existing products and launch new ones, Gaurav Goel, chief executive officer of Toprankers, told VCCircle.
Part of the fresh funds will be deployed to expand its hybrid coaching centers and build its marketing reach and technology platform, he added.
Toprankers, which was founded by Goel, Karan Mehta, and Harsh Gagrani, provides test prep to students looking for careers beyond engineering and medicine such as law, judiciary services, management, design, fashion and architecture. The startup also helps students with career discovery, job preparation and overseas studies.
In a separate statement, Goel noted that over 15 million students appear for Grade 12 every year, with roughly 10% of them sitting for engineering and medical.
"The remaining 90% are unclear about their career choices, we want to help this segment in making a clear choice about their career and offer them the right preparation courses for a brighter future," he added.
Nikhil Vora, founder, and CEO, of Sixth Sense Ventures, said in the statement that online test-prep is a high growth opportunity fueled by increasing competitiveness and migration from offline to online/hybrid.
"Millennials and Gen Z are aspiring for careers, beyond engineering and medical, presenting large whitespaces with almost no presence of incumbents," he added.
The statement also said that the recently announced mandatory exam for admissions across the majority of national universities called CUET (Common Universities Entrance Test) throws up a large opportunity for the company.
“CUET will potentially create a huge test-prep vertical. Being one of the first movers with an active product enables Toprankers to capitalize on this opportunity," said Nimisha Nagarsekar, investment partner, Sixth Sense Ventures. Nagarsekar will be joining the board of the company as part of the transaction.
The edtech segment witnessed a huge investor interest on the back of covid-19 tailwinds since early 2020. However, with weak global cues and pandemic fears receding, the segment has seen a bump with layoffs announced by heavily funded players like Unacademy, Vedantu and Eruditus in recent months.
Still, big funding in the space has not totally gone away. Earlier this month, PhysicsWallah, an edtech platform for engineering and medical entrance exams, raised $100 million (around Rs 777 crore) in its Series A funding round from marquee investors Westbridge and GSV Ventures, hitting a unicorn valuation in its maiden fundraise.