Edtech Startup Geniebook Raises $16.6 Mn Series A Round Funds will go towards scaling the team with strategic hires and product development

By Prabhjeet Bhatla

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Geniebook, Singapore's online learning platform for English, Mathematics, and Science (EMS) syllabus, has secured $16.6 million in a Series A funding round which was led by East Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and several prominent angel investors. John Danner (Dunce Capital), Gaurav Munjal and Roman Saini (Unacademy), Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal (Snapdeal), Alvin Tse (Xiaomi), Linh Pham Giang (Hocmai) were among the private individuals who invested in this round, as well as senior executives from some of Southeast Asia's most influential companies like Grab, Shopee, and Gojek.

This latest round of funding comes after their previous Pre-Series A round which raised $1.1 million in 2019 by a private investment company, Apricot Capital.

"More than ever today, with online pedagogy becoming essential, we must greatly enhance the digital experience to accelerate students' learning. We are thrilled to work with our new partners to elevate our suite of learning products and expand the team strategically in the region," said Neo Zhizhong, chief executive officer and co-founder, Geniebook.

The startup will utilize the funds from this round to further scale the team with strategic new hires across linchpin roles in the Curriculum, Engineering, Product, Growth teams, and more.

Funds will also be used to continually innovate on existing Geniebook products, including GenieSmart, AI-personalised worksheets that identify specific learning gaps for targeted improvement; GenieClass, where students learn from expert teachers via live online classes; and GenieAsk, which allows enrolled students to chat with and receive help from experienced teachers in real-time.

"As we enter the second year of the pandemic, when schools and students have to seek online arrangements, edtech companies are playing an important role and have accelerated their delivery of solutions to users. Geniebook, with its differentiated product offerings, is one of the leading edtech players in Singapore and has shown strong traction in overseas markets like Vietnam. They have been able to do so given the strength, passion, and hard work of the team, which we have known for some time before we made the investment. We have seen them grow as founders and are excited to join them in their journey to develop their core key strategies and expand to other countries in the region," shared Roderick Purwana, managing partner, East Ventures.

Since the start of 2019, Geniebook has achieved impressive revenue growth of over 2,000 per cent with a fast-growing user base of over 150,000 in Southeast Asia. In Vietnam alone, revenue grew by 3 times versus 2020.

"We are excited to back Neo Zhizhong and Alicia Cheong who have been tutoring for the past 10 years and who have built a successful offline tutoring business prior to Geniebook," commented Dev Khare, partner, Lightspeed. "The Southeast Asia region has several countries with exam-driven cultures where Geniebook's worksheets and cohort-based live learning approach delivers a premium experience with measurable improvement in student outcomes."

"I believe the way students learn will continue to change and it is amazing how we are right here at the forefront of what's next in edtech. What excites us most is how we are able to leverage technology plus the passion of our teachers to make online learning a truly personalized and energized experience," added Alicia Cheong, chief operating officer, and co-founder, Geniebook.

The Singapore-headquartered company continues to fly the flag for Singapore education regionally with offices now located in Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

Prabhjeet Bhatla

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