Community-led live learning platform ‘Growth School’ raises $5 million in seed fund, led by Sequoia Capital India & Owl Ventures
Community-led live learning platform ‘Growth School’ raises
$5 million in seed fund, led by Sequoia Capital India & Owl Ventures
● Growth School is a platform where programs are curated and taught by new-age mentors, i.e. top industry professionals from Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Swiggy etc.
● The platform gives access to world class mentors who teach the most critical skills with the highest real-life application
● Over 2,00,000 users have accessed programs on Growth School till date, even when the platform was in stealth mode for most of that period
Bengaluru, January 27, 2021 – Growth School, the community-led live learning platform, announced it has raised a $5 million seed round, led by Sequoia Capital India and Owl Ventures. Over 80 angel investors also participated in the round, including reputed entrepreneurs like Kunal Shah, Nikhil Kamath, Ritesh Agarwal, Tanmay Bhat as well as some international angels like Austen Allred (founder Lamda school), Shaan Puri, Eric Siu. Growth School plans to use the funds to expand its team and build a robust tech platform. The startup plans to venture into newer markets and as part of that foray, also explore metaverse for education.
Recent studies indicate a drop in the employability of India’s youth to 45.9% from last year’s 46.2%. This can largely be attributed to the growing skill gap, specifically technical and soft skills. According to a recent global survey by ManpowerGroup, 69% of employers found it difficult to find a workforce that fits their requirements across technical skills and qualities like adaptability, accountability etc. Traditional post-secondary institutes are not able to adapt fast enough to skill students for the evolving needs of the industry. In the current scenario, job seekers are increasingly looking to upskill by adding industry skills to their CVs to increase their employability.
Growth School fills this gap between industry requirements and the existing academic curriculum through its community-led cohort programmes. The programmes are curated to teach skills that are relevant on the job in a short period of time so students are employable immediately. By partnering with professionals who are the key leaders and influencers in their fields, the platform allows users to learn from the very people they aspire to be. For an average job seeker who does not have the luxury of time, Growth School’s short programs are highly tailored to develop the skills a candidate would need 80% of the time for their new/current job. With these bespoke professional programs of duration four, eight and 12 weeks, Growth School aims to offer job seekers access to highly sought skills at an affordable rate.
Vaibhav Sisinty, founder of GrowthSchool said, “I spent the last two years training over 100k people in growth marketing, and that's when I realized most of the candidates wanted real-life skills that they can use to produce immediate results in their careers. When someone is actively seeking a job, they do not have the luxury of doing a long-term program that spans over months. That is how I founded Growth School, with the mission of helping people get the best skill upgradation from top professionals in the industry, over the shortest period of time. We aim to be the go-to platform for learners all over the world to acquire skills from the top 1% of industry experts.”
Commenting on the funding, Kriti Bansal, Owl Ventures said, “We believe that GrowthSchool has the potential to fundamentally shift how learners upskill and prepare for their personal and professional lives today. Growth School’s live learning platform has garnered strong trust among a growing community of over 200k users in short order as lifelong learning becomes increasingly important to stay competitive in the new digital economy. By teaching highly-relevant topics in short bursts from the leading experts on those topics, GrowthSchool is building the go-to global platform for upskilling.”
Growth School was founded in 2020, as a bootstrapped company with a lean six-member team. Till date, close to 2,00,000 users have accessed Growth School’s programs, even as the platform was in stealth mode for the most period — a testament to the fast-growing user demand for the programs. The platform offers a wide range of programs such as UI, UX, Performance Marketing, how to Become a Freelancer, how to build and sell your NFT, how to Invest in Crypto, how to start a D2C business, etc.
As part of its next stage of evolution, Growth School aims to expand the range of programs it offers as well as expand its reach beyond India, as most of the programs offered have an universal appeal and relevance. Spearing this phase is Growth School’s strong leadership team with Sidharth heading Product & Design (Ex-Headout, Instamojo), Manu Raghavan heading Engineering (Ex- Altana), Rajat Sharma heading Sales (Ex-Vedantu, Toppr) and Bharat Pinnamaraju heading Supply (Ex-Blume Ventures).
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About Growth School
Growth School partners with the top 1% of experts to create high-impact cohort-based programs on personal and professional growth for learners all over the world. The platform brings in the top mentors who teach real, actional and practical things that job seekers can apply in the real world. All programs and workshops are co-created with the mentors to provide an exhaustive learning experience. It also offers users an opportunity to learn from a community of like-minded professionals that can help them have better professional outcomes. With over 2,00,000 students on the platform, Growth School provides an engaging learning experience with relevant and hands-on programs that will help candidates thrive in their real life work environment.
About Sequoia Capital India
Sequoia helps daring founders build legendary companies, from idea to IPO and beyond. Sequoia India operates in Southeast Asia and India where we actively partner with founders from a wide range of companies, across categories, including BYJUs, Carousell, Druva, Gojek, OYO Rooms, Tokopedia, Truecaller, Zilingo, Zomato and more.
We spur founders to push the boundaries of what’s possible. In partnering with Sequoia, startups benefit from 50 years of tribal knowledge and lessons learned working with companies like Airbnb, Alibaba, Apple, Dropbox, Google, LinkedIn and Stripe early on.
From the beginning, universities, endowments and other non-profits have been the backbone of our investor base, which means founders’ accomplishments make a meaningful difference. For more information on Sequoia’s work in India and SE Asia, visit sequoiacap.com/india
About Owl Ventures
Owl Ventures is the largest venture capital fund in the world focused on the education technology market with over $2 billion in assets under management. The Silicon Valley based firm invests in the world's leading education technology companies across the education spectrum encompassing PreK-12, higher education and future of work (career mobility/professional learning) and “EdTech+” (intersection of EdTech and other major industries such as FinTech and healthcare). Owl Ventures has deep domain expertise and leverages a global network of Limited Partners, investors, and strategic partners to help entrepreneurs scale their businesses into transformative category leading companies.