upGrad, Asia’s largest online higher education company has entered into an exclusive agreement to acquire Talentedge (i.e., Arrina Education Services, the Holding Company of Talentedge Education Ventures Private Limited), one of India’s largest online higher education companies. This would be one of the larger consolidations in the Indian Higher education space. Talentedge is slated to do revenue of over USD 17 Million this year and double its revenue in the coming year. Sources say the deal value is at 3-4X this year’s revenue.
This acquisition marks the first step in the massive consolidation that is currently occurring through big-ticket acquisitions led by upGrad. upGrad which is currently the number 1 player in this space is acquiring Talentedge, which is currently the number 4 player in the sector.
“upGrad has cemented its leadership position as the most integrated player in higher education in Asia, serving learners and working professionals across the age group of 18-50 years. Talentedge has meticulously built a strong business over the last decade and stayed the course in this space where most did not survive and we are very pleased to welcome them at upGrad as we build one of the largest EdTech companies in the world,” said Ronnie Screwvala, Chairperson and Co-Founder, upGrad.
“Coming together with upGrad enables us to access their best-in-class products and solutions, technology, and their data-driven pedagogical approach. It’s a win-win for learners and employers as a consolidated positioning enables us to serve them better. Talentedge will continue to work as is with its University & Institute partners to deliver quality education to its learners across Degree & Certification programs,” said Aditya Malik, CEO & MD, Talentedge.
As a means to catapult upGrad’s global position and strategic play to create an integrated Higher EdTech company that is in the value chain of college learners and working professionals globally, this acquisition will allow upGrad access to Talentedge’s network of International institutes including eCornell, UCLA extension, among others. The Gurgaon-based company also offers over 60 courses in partnership with over 20 universities. They partner with top Indian & International entities and have more than 5,00,000 individual and corporate learners.
Gaurav Kumar, President – Corporate Development and M&A, upGrad said, “upGrad’s M&A strategy is to identify companies who share the vision to build a world-class learning organization at scale and we find the Talentedge team as perfect partners. We are in the active stage of closing a few more large acquisitions in India as well internationally which will be announced in the next one to two quarters.”
Aligned with the global trends, the overall Indian EdTech sector is poised for consolidation, with known decacorns focused on M&A deals in the K-12 space, whereas the leading Higher Edtech players are consolidating the segment by acquiring their nearest competitors. In the US, MIT’s not-for-profit online platform edX was acquired by a listed educational technology company 2U, and other giants listing on the bourses. India’s EdTech sector, fixated on an established global presence, is aggressively expanding and increasing its TAM (Total Addressable Market) by venturing into and setting up shops in markets across the US, UK, South Asia, and the Middle East.