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BYJU Plans to Shut WhiteHat Jr Amid Growing Losses: Report

WhiteHat Jr contributed 26.73 per cent to BYJU’S total loss of Rs 1,118.25 crore in the financial year 2021

BYJU Plans to Shut WhiteHat Jr Amid Growing Losses: Report
Byju Raveendran, chief executive officer, Byjus
POSTED ON February 23, 2023 1:08 PM

BYJU'S, India's edtech giant, is reportedly considering shutting down coding platform WhiteHat Jr as part of its cost-cutting measures in the face of macroeconomic challenges and funding cuts. BYJU'S acquired WhiteHat Jr in 2020 for $300 million, but the company has been mired in controversy, including for misleading advertising and layoffs. The platform has also reportedly been a significant drain on BYJU'S finances, with the company spending approximately $14 million per month on the coding platform until now.

WhiteHat Jr offers live coding, math, and music lessons, but in the financial year 2021 (FY21), it contributed to BYJU'S 26.73 per cent total loss of Rs 4,588 crore ($625 million). BYJU'S chief executive officer (CEO) Byju Raveendran has referred to WhiteHat Jr as an "under-performer" compared to other acquired companies, with future growth likely to involve high cash burn.

This news comes as BYJU'S seeks to raise more than $500 million in funding from multiple investors, including private equity group TPG, to avoid potential debt issues. The company has also announced plans to lay off 2,500 employees in its quest for profitability by the end of FY23.

The potential shutdown of WhiteHat Jr would mark a significant shift in BYJU'S strategy, as the company has previously made a series of high-profile acquisitions to expand its reach in the edtech market. However, the current economic climate and funding environment have forced the company to reevaluate its priorities and make tough decisions about which business units to keep and which to cut.

Overall, the edtech sector has seen significant growth in recent years, driven in part by the COVID-19 pandemic and the shift to remote learning. However, this growth has not been without its challenges, as companies like BYJU'S have faced increased competition, regulatory scrutiny, and funding cuts. As the market continues to evolve, it remains to be seen which edtech companies will emerge as winners and which will fall by the wayside.

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