Baiju’s $230 million settlement approved a $1 billion cash settlement for Blackstone. • TechCrunch


Byju’s has cleared $234 million in payments it owes Blackstone to the global investment firm for its $1 billion cash acquisition, a source familiar with the matter told TechCrunch, one of the criticisms leveled at the Indian edtech giant in recent months.

The $22 billion Bengaluru-headquartered startup has pushed back some payments on its nearly $1 billion acquisition of a fitness chain, citing regulatory approval. Blackstone, which is also an investor in Baiju, owned 38% of Akash before the acquisition.

Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO of the popular edtech startup, told TechCrush in an interview earlier this month that Byju and Blackstone have jointly decided to process payments later. The Indian startup cleared the payment this week, said the source, who asked not to be identified because the details are private.

Blackstone and Baiju did not immediately respond to requests for comment Friday evening.

The Indian startup, which offers online and offline tutoring services for students from kindergarten to preparing for competitive college entrance exams, has spent more than $2.5 billion in the past two years to acquire several companies, including US-based reading platform Epic, coding suite. Tinker, India-based Great Learning, GradeUp, Topper and Austria’s GeoGebra.

It has also made a bid to acquire publicly listed edtech company 2U, Raveendran confirmed in an earlier interview.

Earlier this month, the Indian startup unveiled its financial statements for the year ending March 2021 after a long delay. Baiju said it posted revenue of $305.6 million in the financial year ending March 2021 and widened its loss to $577.4 million. Raveendran said that 40 percent of the revenue of the fiscal year – due to the period of consumption and credit sales – for the next year.

The startup, which counts BlackRock, Tiger Global, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Sequoia India among its backers, said it generated total revenue of $1.258 billion (undisclosed) in the financial year ended March this year. Between April and July, the startup reported $570 million in revenue.

Byju’s is looking to go public next year. Raveendran said in an earlier interview that Baiju will closely monitor macro market conditions and will file for an IPO in nine to 12 months. “I don’t think the markets will turn this year,” he said.



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