Higher learning startup Sunstone Eduversity has raised $28 million as part of its Series B funding round led by WestBridge Capital.
The round also saw existing investors Saama Capital, Alteria Capital and Work10m.
According to the company, it will use the fresh capital to invest in learning and technology assets, while doubling down on geographical and team expansion.
The company is expected to expand its campus partnerships from 24 to 60 and will look to establish a presence across 35 Indian cities in the next 12 months, Sunstone’s co-founder and chief operating officer, Piyush Nangru, told Mint.
The startup provides a hybrid learning model for Master of Business Administration (MBA) courses, and helps manage the technology, curriculum and supply aspects for Indian colleges and universities.
Sunstone has also diversified to under-graduate courses including Bachelors of Business Administration (BBA) and Master of Computer Application (MCA) this year. It helps these students with placements and has partnerships with more than 500 corporates in India, the company said.
“Higher education institutions don’t have enough resources to manage the upcoming supply for these courses. Sunstone partners with these universities to provide education as a full stack and acts as a direct-to-consumer brand for students, following an online and on-campus learning model. For corporates, Sunstone provides standardised high-quality talent which is otherwise difficult to find,” Nangru told Mint.
The platform has scaled its student enrolment from 250 in 2019 to 2,400 in 2021. It looks to grow enrolment to 25,000 students by next year.
“Sunstone’s higher education programs have the potential to bring in the much awaited transformation in the Indian education system where students will now have access to a high quality education product in all corners of the country. We are excited by Sunstone's growth and the innovation in technology and learning systems so far,” said Sandeep Singhal, managing director, WestBridge Capital.
The company also looks to scale hiring and expand its team size from 300 to 700 in the next 12 months. It is also looking to make senior hires across roles of product, technology and learning outcomes.
“The team at Sunstone has continued to have a lot of success in proving their model of making best-in class outcome-based education available across the country with a high degree of accountability with respect to the students’ aspirations. We continue to be excited and impressed with the growth in the product offering, team and student signups,” said Kiranbir Nag, partner, Saama Capital.
The company will also look to expand its geographical footprint to international geographies, towards the end of next year, and currently is assessing the South-east Asian and African markets.