[Funding alert] Edtech startup PlanetSpark raises Rs 3.2 Cr in pre-Series A funding
Gurugram-based edtech startup PlanetSpark recently said it had raised a follow-on pre-Series A round of Rs 3.2 crore from Indian Angel Network, Lead Angels, and Hyderabad Angels. Existing seed investor and one of India’s largest coaching brands, FIITJEE Limited, also participated in this round.
According to the company, it will use the funds for expanding business into new geographies and increasing enrolments by 10x over the next 12-15 months.
Founded in 2016 by Maneesh Dhooper and Kunal Malik, PlanetSpark provides neighbourhood learning zones where children learn and develop 'new-age' skills under one roof.
The startup combines online learning with an offline experience for children through its in-house learning products.
PlanetSpark Co-Founder Kunal Malik said,
“Pure online learning through videos is passive and suffers from very poor completion rates. The presence of a dedicated space, time, and a mentor is essential for young kids to learn effectively. Hence, we blend online with an offline experience at our neighbourhood learning spaces where kids can learn academic skills (English, math, science) and 21st century skills (coding, robotics, public speaking etc) in the presence of a qualified teacher.”
PlanetSpark operates with an asset-light model of partnering with unutilised assets in pre-schools, schools, and strategic partners such as Oyo Townhouse to set up its neighbourhood blended-learning centres in a low-cost and scalable manner.
Last April, the startup had struck a deal with hospitality unicorn OYO to set up more than 500 ‘new-age’ learning spaces for children across India, catering to all the learning needs of KG to Class 8 kids in the neighbourhood.
“Though our asset-light model and an omnichannel approach, our acquisition costs go down considerably with time. As a learning zone grows, its brand builds in the area and it acts like a magnet to attract more students due to network effects, with a 42 percent referral rate. Due to our face-to-face interaction with children and learning analytics and live-feed system for parents, our engagement is very high, leading to 95 percent retention rates,” said Maneesh Dhooper, Co-founder of PlanerSpark.
Delhi-based CENSIE Capital Partners was the adviser to PlanetSpark for this transaction.
(Edited by Teja Lele Desai)