Apna becomes India's fastest unicorn👔

Byju’s acquisition spree continues, IPO-bound Pine Labs raises $100 mn and more.

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Apna.co joins the unicorn club in 21 months👨🏻‍💻

Apna.co, a professional networking platform for blue and grey-collar workers, has entered the unicorn club just 21 months after its product launch. In doing so, it beat the record held by business-to-business commerce startup Udaan, which achieved unicorn status within 26 months of registration.

According to its founder, Apna .co has grown 125x over the past 15 months.

The company said it had raised $100 million in a new funding round led by Tiger Global, which already has a stake in it.

Apna.co becomes the 27th unicorn of the year, which has seen Indian startups attract unprecedented funding. As of September 3, investors had pumped in more than $21 billion into the country’s startups this year.


Byju’s buys US coding platform Tynker🚀

Another day, another Byju’s acquisition. The edtech firm announced today it has bought US-based coding platform Tynker in a stock-and-cash deal.

The acquisition will give Byju’s access to Tynker’s 60 million students and 100,000 schools.

Tynker cofounders Krishna Vedati, Srinivas Mandyam and Kelvin Chong are expected to continue as chief executive, chief technology officer and chief architect, respectively.

Byju's has acquired two other US edtech companies in the past 18 months — digital reading platform Epic and educational gaming company Osmo.

Byju's has acquired around 15 companies in total since it was founded in 2011.

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Hot Shorts⚡

  • Discord, a chat platform, has raised $500 million in a new funding round led by Dragoneer Investment Group. The deal values the company at about $15 billion.

  • BharatAgri, an agritech startup, has raised $6.5 million in a Series A round-headed by agri-focused investor Omnivore.

  • Bright Money, an AI-enabled personal finance platform, has raised $31 million from Sequoia Capital India, Falcon Edge Capital and Hummingbird Ventures in a Series A funding round.

  • Ayu Health, a health-tech business, has raised $6.3 million in Series A funding from Vertex Ventures and Stellaris Venture Partners.


Pine Labs raises $100 million from US investment fund💰

Pine Labs said today that it has raised $100 million from US-based Invesco Developing Markets Fund. The new funding comes just months after it raised $600 million in two tranches from a host of global and domestic investors, which valued the firm at $3.5 billion.

The company, which plans to go public in the US next year, has appointed Wall Street bankers Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley to steer its listing. It is eyeing a valuation of $6 billion for its IPO.

The latest development comes at a time when digital payments continue to see steady growth in India, fuelled by the Covid-19 pandemic.


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