Alibaba, Tiger Lead $1.6 Billion Funding in China Edtech Arena

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Tiger Global Management LLC led a $1.6 billion investment in Chinese online education startup Zuoyebang, underscoring how the Covid-19 pandemic has turned distance learning into a red-hot business.

Existing backers Softbank Vision Fund, Sequoia Capital China and FountainVest Partners also participated in the funding, Zuoyebang said in a statement. The latest round comes months after Zuoyebang, which also counts Goldman Sachs and GGV Capital among its investors, raised $750 million in June.

Investors have poured into the sector this year as more students embraced e-learning, a trend that has been accelerated by school closures amid the pandemic. China’s online learning market is expected to reach 315 billion yuan ($48 billion) in 2020, almost tripled from five years ago, according to global market data tracker Statista.

Timeline Fundraising Investors
Sept. 2015 $25 million Sequoia, Legend Capital
Sept. 2016 $60 million GGV Capital, Xianghe Capital, Sequoia, Legend Capital
Aug. 2017 $150 million H Capital, Tiger Fund, Sequoia, GGV Capital, Legend Capital
July 2018 $350 million Coatue, Goldman Sachs, Primavera Capital, Taihe Capital
Nov. 2018 $500 million Softbank
June 2020 $750 million FountainVest, Tiger Global, Softbank

Source: Zuoyebang

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