Uolo, an education technology platform that works with private K-12 schools to offer online learning programs to middle and low-income families, has raised $22.5 million through an equity-debt mix Series A round led by UAE-headquartered VC fund Winter Capital. Existing investors Blume Ventures and new Dubai-based fund Morphosis Venture Capital, have participated in the round. Although exact details of the equity and debt percentage involved were not disclosed.
The Bengaluru-based startup plans to utilize the investment to widen its reach to 50,000 schools across India over the next four years and expand its learning programs with courses across STEAM subjects in the coming months. It is also looking to partner with education companies as well as people and entities developing high-quality content in the near future.
Co-founded by Pallav Pandey, Ankur Pandey and Siddharth Singh, Uolo aims to empower schools across India to nurture future-ready students equipped with new-age skills. The company does this by providing scholastic in-school curricular programs in essential skills like English Communication, Coding, etc. This enables schools to ensure all-around development for their students. The platform also helps schools to administer efficiently and effectively with its sophisticated school platform.
Schools tying up with Uolo get an ERP platform called the Uolo School Platform for free. It works as a unified platform where schools can access fee management, report card management and attendance management on a single dashboard. The ERP platform functions as an entry gate for Uolo as it allows the startup to create an ecosystem once schools start using it. This encourages parents or guardians to use the app to receive communications directly from schools — instead of using typical communication channels such as WhatsApp groups.
Commenting on the fundraising, Managing Director of Winter Capital, Anton Farlenkov, said in a statement:
The first wave of edtech companies in India have proven consumer interest in online education. However, they lacked a cost-effective distribution. We believe that there will be a new generation of edtech companies capable of building organic, low-cost distribution, allowing students to study at $10 per year rather than $10 per hour. Our investment in Uolo is based on our confidence in this type of company.
Uolo, which employs about 350 individuals, has partnered with more than 8,500 schools across India and currently reaches 3.7 million students. The startup claims that it is reducing the cost by operating in a business-to-business-to-consumer model, working with private schools to let them offer online learning programs to their students and levy the charges as part of the school fees. Its programs are also designed in tandem with the curricula of the partnered schools, making it easier for students to double down on learning the same lessons.
The firm believes that the schools of today will go beyond the confines of their physical spaces to a continuum that extends even after the school teaching hours. It is developing amazing technology to aid this transformation and building products that teachers love and schools can depend upon.
In 2020, Uolo Technologies had raised Rs 20 crore in its Pre-Series A funding round led by Omidyar Network India and Blume Ventures.