Reach Capital leads post-Series A funding in upskilling platform Springboard

By Narinder Kapur

  • 18 Dec 2019

Ed-tech platform Springboard, which focuses on providing career upskilling solutions for professionals, has raised $11 million (Rs 78 crore at current exchange rate) in a post-Series A financing round.

Education-focused Reach Capital led the latest funding, SlideRule Labs Inc.-operated Springboard said in a statement. Other investors that participated in the round include Pearson Ventures, World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) as well as existing backers such as Costanoa Ventures, Learn Capital and Blue Frog Capital.

Springboard also announced a partnership with Microsoft to train and place 5,000 students in analytics jobs over the next three years. It said it will use the fresh capital it has raised to expanding its product offering into new verticals, as well as enhance career services, increase its India footprint and launch alumni-focused initiatives.

“Our industry-designed programmes, combined with in-depth, 1-on-1 mentorship and career guidance, enable people to achieve their full potential,” Springboard co-founder Parul Gupta said.

Reach Capital general partner Esteban Sosnik said the firm was confident in its investment because of Springboard’s co-founders (Gupta and Gautam Tambay), as well as student satisfaction and job placement rates.

The company, which is headquartered in San Francisco and maintains an Indian presence in Bengaluru, was founded by Gupta and Tambay in 2013. It operates on a one-on-one model, where students that are accepted for its learning cohorts are partnered with a mentor who will guide them through the course, among other things.

In December 2017, the ed-tech startup raised $9.5 million (around Rs 62 crore) in a Series A funding round led by United States-based early-stage venture capital firm Costanoa Ventures, with Learn Capital and Appdynamics founder Jyoti Bansal taking part.

In 2015, Springboard had raised $1.7 million (around Rs 11.3 crore) from a clutch of investors including Blue Fog Capital.

Deals in the ed-tech segment

The online learning and ed-tech segment has attracted considerable investor interest of late.

The valuation of ed-tech firm Byju’s crossed $5 billion after it raised $31.3 million in a funding round in March led by existing investors General Atlantic and Tencent Holdings Ltd. In December last year, Byju’s announced that it had secured $540 million (Rs 3,855 crore then) in a round led by South African tech conglomerate Naspers.

Last month, Sunstone Eduversity Pvt. Ltd. raised Rs 11.3 crore ($1.56 million) in a seed funding round led by Bengaluru-based Prime Venture Partners and joined by LetsVenture, PS1 Venture and GlobalLogic co-founder Rajul Garg.

In October, Info Edge (India) Ltd, which owns and operates portals such as job site, said it had invested Rs 7.06 crore (a little less than $1 million) in Adda247, a test-preparation platform for government and public-sector exams.

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