PhysicsWallah – India’s first profitable edtech unicorn is here

  • PhysicsWallah raised $100 million in a Series A round from Westbridge and GSV Ventures.
  • Alakh Pandey had started ‘PhysicsWallah’ as ​​a YouTube channel in 2014 and is now valued at $1.1 billion
  • It plans to use the latest capital for business expansion, branding and opening more learning centers.

Edtech PhysicsWallah company, also known as PW, is the latest Indian startup to join the unicorn club. The company has raised $100 million in a Series A round from Westbridge and GSV Ventures, at a valuation of $1.1 billion.

A unicorn, in startup language, is a company worth more than a billion dollars. PhysicsWallah is the first edtech company to reach this milestone this year. Overall, it is the 101st company in India to receive this award.

The eight-year-old startup joins the elite list of edtech unicorns Byju’s, Vedantu, Eruditus, Vedantu and Upgrad.

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It plans to use the latest capital for business expansion, branding, opening more learning centers and introducing more course offerings. It also aims to launch educational content in nine Indian languages, including Bengali, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Gujarati, Odia, Malayalam and Kannada.

“This latest development will help us advance our vision and implement new initiatives to enhance students’ learning paths, enabling them to reach new heights in their careers,” said Alakh Pandey, Founder and CEO of PhysicsWallah.

YouTube channel to a multi-billion dollar company

Alakh Pandey had started ‘PhysicsWallah’ as ​​a YouTube channel in 2014. Looking at its popularity among students, Unacademy
Reportedly offered to hire him as a teacher as well with a salary of ₹40 crore per year. He declined to build a profitable business with PhysicsWallah.

The PhysicsWallah currently has more than 20 centers in 18 cities with more than 10,000 students enrolled for the 2022-23 academic year. It has 5.2 million downloads on its app in Google PlayStore and 6.9 million subscribers on YouTube.

The company claims that more than 10,000 of its students passed competitive exams such as NEET and JEE in 2020 and 2021 – thanks to its comprehensive, interactive and engaging educational content.

It employs 1,900 people – including 500 educators, 90-100 tech experts, 200 associate professors to answer student questions, and 200 professionals to create exam questions and theses.

The ‘only profitable edtech unicorn’

Notably, PhysicWallah is the only profitable edtech unicorn right now and has started up in its journey. The company closed its first external round today, on June 7.

“The company has been profitable from the start with positive cash flows and reserves. Our turnover has increased tenfold in the year 2021-22 compared to 2020-21. Our current run rate for FY23 is $65 million,” Pandey added.

The development also comes at a time when experts are anticipating a lengthy financing winter, which will slow the flow of capital in the startup ecosystem. According to several experts spoke to, edtech could be one of the hardest hit sectors as students go back to school.

Even edtech companies like Unadacemy, Vedantu and FrontRow had to lay off 10-30% of their staff to extend their runways.


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