The company raised $500,000(about Rs 3.3 crore) in seed capital, through a funding round led by Blume Ventures, along with angel investors including Rajan Anandan (Google), Sumit Jain (CommonFloor), Aprameya Radhakrishna (Taxi4Sure), Sujeet Kumar (earlier Flipkart), Phanindra Sama (RedBus) among others in May 2016. It had raised $1 million back in 2015 from a clutch of investors including Flipkart co-founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal and Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma, with Blume Ventures leading the round.
Unacademy began as an educational YouTube channel by Gaurav Munjal, Roman Saini, Hemesh Singh and Sachin Gupta. It later launched a website where educators to create courses on the platform. All educators go through an interview process and selection is based on their experience.
The e-learning space in India has rapidly expanded in the last couple of years. From initiatives like Google’s Internet education program for rural women, to Amazon India’s Exam Central which lists solved papers and articles from academicians for entrance exams, the sector has seen a wide range of services being launched in this time. Indian edtech startups to raise funding in this period include Jigsaw Academy, CollegeDekho, S Chand, Smartivity Labs and Schoolguru among others.
However, it looks like Unacedemy’s biggest rival at the moment is Byju’s Learning. It raised raised an undisclosed amount in funding from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), an investment arm of the World Bank. This followed a $50 million funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), Sequoia Capital, Sofina, Lightspeed Ventures & Times Internet. At the time, Byju said that it would use the funding to expand internationally. It had previously also raised $75 million from Sequoia Capital and Sofina in March last year.