Kalpathi Group’s Veranda acquires coaching institute Chennai Race
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Veranda Learning Solutions Pvt. Ltd, the education and ed-tech venture of Chennai-based Kalpathi Group, has acquired Chennai Race Coaching Institute Pvt. Ltd for Rs 100 crore ($13.55 million at current exchange rates).

Veranda Learning said in a statement that the transaction value involves stock and earn-out components, and that Chennai Race will be rebranded to Veranda Race.

The acquisition comes less than a month after Veranda Learning’s launch. The Kalpathi Group has interests in sectors such as software services and entertainment. Its founders, Suresh Kalpathi, Kalpathi S Aghoram and Kalpathi S Ganesh, had set up SSI in the 1990s, which later acquired Aptech.  

Chennai Race offers coaching for examinations related to banking, staff selection commission and public service commission. The company recorded sales of Rs 45 crore for 2019-20 and trained more than two lakh students across four states, per the statement.

Veranda Race will initially offer result-oriented online training programmes for these examinations and is aiming to launch course content in 11 languages by December next year.

“In Race, we see an alignment with our philosophy of rigor and discipline in their education delivery, focus on outcomes and affordability to the real India. We expect Veranda Race to grow significantly in the coming months,” Veranda Learning CEO Suresh Kalpathi said.

“At Veranda Race, the key metric to assess our success will be ‘number of students getting jobs’, which is the main goal of this venture,” Chennai Race promoter Bharath Seeman said. Seeman will also head Veranda Race.

Apart from its focus on public-sector examinations, Veranda Learning says it will offer courses in software skills such as languages and databases, and frontier technologies including artificial intelligence and machine learning.

The acquisition is the latest move in the education and ed-tech space, which has seen several moves this year in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

On Monday, the business-to-business firm LEAD School acquired the gamification-based assessment platform QuizNext. The company said the move will help enhance its offerings.

Last month, VCCircle was the first to report that the Ronnie Screwvala-co-founded upGrad Education had marked its own entry into the test-preparation segment with the acquisition of The Gate Academy.

Marquee startups in the space such as Byju’s and Unacademy have acquired firms such as WhiteHat Jr and Kreatryx.

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