Sequoia India plans $50m investment in K12 despite market crash

Sequoia India is in advanced stages of deliberations to invest more than $50 million in K12 Techno Services, a startup that offers a range of services to educational institutions and also runs its own chain of schools, doubling down on a business that she first backed more than a decade two years ago, two sources familiar with the matter told TechCrunch.

K12 Techno Services – which has raised more than $75 million in previous rounds, according to Tracxn – also engaged with TPG and Accel in recent weeks, but decided to move forward with the existing backer. Sequoia India, said one of the sources.

The cycle is not over, so the terms of the investment may change, the sources warned, requesting anonymity to share non-public information. It is unknown if anyone other than Sequoia is also investing in the cycle.

K12 Techno Services operates Orchids – The chain of international schools in over two dozen cities in India. It operates over 90 schools where it teaches a range of subjects from robotics to philosophy to the “360 degree development” of an individual. Orchids has served more than 75,000 students, according to its website.

It also offers an integrated curriculum, a platform for online courses and other school management applications to more than 300 schools through its branch called Let’s Eduvate. “Our comprehensive solutions are scalable and adaptable and work effectively for all types of schools. They are effective for various school management activities designed for the overall growth of students, therefore for schools,” it describes on its website.

Sparkle Box, another branch of K12, runs an online store of bespoke activity kits for children.

K12 did not respond to a request for comment Thursday, while Sequoia India declined to comment.

The deal represents Sequoia’s aggressive, multifaceted approach to tackling the edtech market in India, where more than 300 million students attend school and sit competitive entrance exams at the university. He is an early funder of Byju’s, Unacademy, and Doubtnut serving students from kindergarten to those preparing to enter college. He is also an investor in Eruditus, which provides higher education to students in dozens of markets.

Edtech startups in India – and beyond – are among the hardest hit by the current market downturn which has reversed much of the gains made over 13 years of growth. The information technology industry in the South Asian market has cut nearly 5,000 jobs this year.

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