Unacademy acquires game streaming platform Rheo TV; Sequoia, Lightspeed, other investors to exit

Unacademy has made its eighth acquisition in 16 months. The edtech unicorn is buying out live game-streaming startup Rheo TV in an undisclosed deal, giving its high-profile investors a full exit.
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Edtech unicorn Unacademy has acquired live game-streaming platform Rheo TV for an undisclosed amount. The latter was founded by ex-Unacademy employees Saksham Keshri and Prakash Kumar in 2019.

The Rheo TV co-founders will be joining Relevel (Unacademy's hiring platform) as founders alongside Co-founder and CEO Shashank Murali, Unacademy Founder and CEO Gaurav Munjal announced in a tweet. "Relevel founding team getting stronger... Saksham and Prakash - welcome back to Unacademy :) [sic]," he said.

Following the acquisition, Rheo TV's existing investors Sequoia Capital India's Surge, Lightspeed India, AET Fund, Founder and former CEO of redBus Phanindra Sama, and former Country Head of Google Mobile Mahesh Narayanan, will fully exit the company.

Bengaluru-based Rheo TV was founded in August 2019 with the goal of making game streaming a mainstream career option in India. The platform allows professional gamers to drive engagement and monetisation of their feeds.

Within a year of launch, the platform clocked more than 5 million users and over 10,000 live streamers, including several college students.

On the acquisition, Saksham Keshri said in a tweet,

"We will be joining Relevel to build a platform that helps job seekers irrespective of their educational background get jobs with the best companies in the world. Coming back to Unacademy feels like coming home."

Relevel, an Unacademy Group, offers job aspirants access to openings and interviews at India's fastest-growing companies, and also connects recruiters with the best candidates, pre-assessed on their aptitude, competencies, and skills.

Rheo TV founders

Rheo TV is Unacademy's eighth acquisition since March 2020. It follows the acquisitions of KreatryxCodeChefPrepLadderMastree (where it acquired a majority stake), Coursavy, NeoStencil, and TapChief.

The SoftBank, General Atlantic, Facebook, and Tiger Global-backed company is doing a land grab of sorts across learning segments, as India's edtech sector witnesses a major consolidation wave since the COVID-19 outbreak.

An early-stage investor told YourStory in a prior interaction,

"COVID-19 brought edtech ahead by 2-3 years. Some early-stage startups got pandemic market-fit. Their MAUs became DAUs in three months, which is crazy. Capital has come in, and capital is chasing the winners. Market leaders are getting a disproportionate premium."

Currently dominated by Unacademy and BYJU'S, the domestic edtech market is estimated to be worth $19.7 billion by 2030, according to a Bernstein report.

Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta

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