Education Firm iDiscoveri Raises PE From India 2020 Fund

Gurgaon-based iDiscoveri Education today said that it has raised private equity funding from India 2020 Fund, managed by the Mumbai and New York-based Lighthouse Funds. iDiscoveri said that the fund will take a minority stake in the education services company.

VCCircle reported last month that iDiscoveri was in talks with PE firms to raise around $10 million with Lighthouse leading the talks.

iDiscoveri helps schools develop curriculum through its programme called XSEED and is also involved in corporate training. XSEED involves services like student curriculum, assessment, teacher education and instructional leadership. The X-seed initiative has expanded to more than 400 schools and 140,000 students across the country. Some of these schools include Padma Sheshadri Chennai, Bombay Scottish and Hyderabad Public School.

Besides, iDiscoveri also runs a network of learning centers, a leadership consultancy, and owns an outdoor education company called Youreka. The firm was founded by former worldwide marketing director of Group Danone Ashish Rajpal and its leadership includes alumni of Harvard, IIM, IIT, XLRI.

BMR Advisors acted as the sole transaction and financial advisors to iDiscoveri.

"We are happy to partner with Lighthouse. They understand our work and have shown great confidence in the company and its management,” said Ashish Rajpal, Founder of iDiscoveri.

“We are very excited about the opportunity to partner with Ashish and the iDiscoveri team. We believe in the company’s vision, and look forward to iDiscoveri emerging as India’s most powerful education brand,” said Mukund Krishnaswami, Director of Lighthouse Advisors India Private Limited. Lighthouse, which also invests in the US, targets mid-market sector from its $125-million India 2020 Fund.

It is also investing Rs 34 crore ($7.3 million) in Dhanuka Agritech, involved in the businesses of agro-chemicals & seeds.

India 2020 Fund has made nine investments in India, including premium cookie manufacturer Unibic Biscuits, and facilities management firm Radiant Hospitality.

(As published in VC CIRCLE on Wed, 01 Sep 2010)