Simplilearn Solutions on Monday said Blackstone will acquire a majority stake in the edutech company for USD 250 million (about Rs 1,860 crore). Private equity funds managed by Blackstone have entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a controlling stake in Simplilearn Solutions, a statement said. Simplilearn founder and CEO Krishna Kumar said Blackstone is investing USD 250 million in the company.
The previous investors – Kalaari Capital, Helion Venture Partners and Mayfield Fund – have exited now, but the management of Simplilearn remains the same and their stake will also remain unaffected, he told PTI. Details of the quantum of the stake being bought and valuation of Simplilearn were not disclosed. Simplilearn was founded in 2010 and the company has been profitable for the fourth year in a row. The platform offers over 100 programmes to help early to mid-career professionals acquire new-age digital skills across cloud, DevOps, data science, artificial intelligence and machine learning, digital marketing, cybersecurity and others.
More than two million professionals globally have used Simplilearn to date. “The pandemic has only accelerated the need for digital skills and the industry has demonstrated absolute readiness for upskilling online. Hence, this is the most opportune time to take the next big leap in our journey to build the world’s largest digital skilling company,” Kumar said. Blackstone can add significant value to the company because of its scale, commitment to building businesses, and global network that will enable Simplilearn to develop partnerships with businesses and universities as it continues to expand globally, he added.
“We would also like to thank our previous investors, Kalaari Capital, Helion Venture Partners and Mayfield Fund for their undaunted support and trust in our journey of becoming a market leader, he said. Amit Dixit, Head of Asia for Blackstone Private Equity, said this is Blackstone’s first private equity investment in Asia in a consumer technology company. “Like many other sectors, technology is disrupting education and education technology has been a high conviction theme for Blackstone in India and globally…We are excited to partner with Krishna Kumar and Simplilearn’s top-notch management team to accelerate growth and build the world’s pre-eminent digital learning company, and we expect this to be the first of many such investments in Asia, he added.