What about Unacademy after a big cost-cutting effort that has resulted in the elimination of 1,000 jobs?
Unacademy is an edtech firm that has cut off about 1,000 employees in the last few weeks, including on-call and contract workers, according to people familiar with the situation. This comprises employees of Prepladder, a subsidiary of the Unacademy company, which it bought in 2020. The collective includes Unacademy, PrepLadder, CodeChef, Graphy, and Relevel.
Approximately 300 of the 1,000 workers sacked, are teachers, or Educators, as the start-up refers to them. Others are members of sales, business, and other groups. According to a report in Economic Times, the Softbank-backed edtech firm was aiming to ‘lower their financial burn.’
According to the report, the company’s internal communication channel was down for several employees on the 30th and 31st of March. HR personnel later emailed them a link for the online video meeting and told them to leave the company. The corporation did not assist them in seeking alternative employment.
They were not provided with any feedback or performance assessments. ET reported about an employee saying that they were forced to work 12-14 hours a day. There was a lot of ‘pressure and poison’ in the job.
Unacademy is a Bangalore-based online learning technology startup. Gaurav Munjal started the it as a YouTube channel in 2010. It was created in 2015 by Roman Saini, Gaurav Munjal, and Hemesh Singh and is headquartered in Bangalore. The organization employs over 12,000 educators and provides study materials for a variety of professional and educational admission tests. Their lessons are available as free videos or as paid subscriptions.
Since its inception, the company has grown dramatically, with over 10,000 educators and over 13 million users. Hemesh Singh, who is the co-founder and CTO of Unacademy, joyfully announced that the company has reached 750,000 active paying customers.
According to Unacademy COO Vivek Sinha’s tweet, the company had reached the milestone of 650,000 active users on its platform.
Unacademy’s various platforms, including Unacademy Plus, as well as other business properties such as Chamomile Tea with Toppers, Wifistudy, Team Solutions, Unacademy JEE, and Unacademy Studios, generate almost 110 million monthly views, making it the largest provider of instructional content. This learning app is available for Android, iOS, and Windows and is simple to use.
The main vision of Unacademy is to create a large number of courses in a variety of languages for students all around the world. It seeks to engage with the best minds and inspire India’s youth population, which represents 19 percent of the world’s youth, to bring themselves into this contemporary world by spreading its teachers alongside its pupils. The firm focuses on increasing its teachers, and languages, and introducing new examinations to the present mix because 70% of its pupils originate from tier 3 cities, where there is a shortage of quality educators.
Last week, the Bengaluru-based company asked about 600 employees to leave to slash costs in the face of an imminent slowdown in venture capital investment and a tightening of the general economic situation. It was estimated at $3.4 billion when it secured $440 million in August of last year, led by Singapore’s Temasek.
Unacademy, which is based on Facebook, has purchased 12 businesses so far to improve its presence in the Edtech space. Swiflearn, which had been bought by Unacademy in November 2021, was the final acquisition. Spayee, an Edtech SaaS platform bought by Unacademy-backed Graphy on October 11, 2021, was earlier acquired by the firm.
Unacademy has been in talks to buy Swiflearn, a Gurugram-based online access platform for academic courses that seeks to provide students with a tailored learning experience, since October 18, 2021. Swiflearn was established by Abhinav Agarwal and Anand Bakode and focuses on the K-10 segment, offering free and subscription-based programs to kids. The acquisition deal was in its final stages at the time, and its value was estimated to be between $15 and $20 million.
The impending ESOPs repurchase, according to co-founder Roman Saini, will be the online learning platform’s third and largest. He also expressed gratitude to Unacademy’s employees for believing in the company’s “ideal of democratizing education.” It is also announcing Teacher Stock Options (TSOPs) for its educators, who will then be eligible for fully vested Stock Grants after three, four, or five years with the company.
Munjal went on to say that the company presently has more than 300 educators who are qualified for the award, which they will get right away. In the next few years, the firm will award over $40 million awards to its educators.
Unacademy uses both Businesses to business and Business to commerce business models, with premium subscriptions providing the majority of the company’s revenue!
Unacademy’s primary income model is Freemium. The company provides a variety of free services, which the public can use indefinitely. They will, however, have to pay a nominal fee if they want additional high-quality content.
Unacademy Plus – Unacademy provides a variety of classes as well as pre-recorded video lectures with a wealth of material to all students for free. The organization, however, provides paid live classes to help students answer their issues through one-on-one doubt clearing sessions and appropriate lectures. This is available as part of a subscription service called ‘Unacademy Plus.’
Unacademy Plus – provides a variety of classes as well as pre-recorded video lectures with a wealth of material for all students. The organization, however, provides paid live classes to help students answer their issues through one-on-one doubt clearing sessions and proper lectures. This is available as part of a paid subscription called ‘Unacademy Plus.’
Relevel – In May 2021, Unacademy will launch a new platform named Relevel. This new website aims to assist job seekers to find work within 15 days after applying. Just since October 1, 2021, Relevel claims to have over 2.35 lakh users and an employment rate of 100 percent.
Persons who have found work are largely from the country’s Tier II and Tier III cities. Furthermore, experienced job searchers claimed to have received a wage increase of up to 150 percent through Unacademy’s recruitment platform.
To date, Relevel has seen 64+ firms throughout industries use its platform to conduct interviews with candidates based on the tests. Relevel currently offers three examinations for job hunters: frontend growth, backend advancement, and business development. These three tests are varied in character, ranging from multiple-choice questions to algorithmic tests to case studies, and they are all completed in one day. The Relevel tests may include the creation of a mini-app, following the final round and interviews with a professional in the field.
Relevel is now led by Shashank Murali, founder of the recruitment platform. On October 1, 2021, the platform raised $20 million from Unacademy.
Graphy – The Unacademy Group owns Graphy, a platform that is aimed to assist the country’s creators in expanding their audiences. It also enables them to monetize their expertise, organize live cohort-based courses, and more. Influencers, educators, and domain experts from all around the country are invited to join the all-new Graphy, a SaaS platform.
Unacademy’s Graphy launched its Graphy Creator Grant on June 22, 2021, intending to assist candidates in starting their online school.
YouTube channels – Since we all know, Unacademy began as a Youtube channel. Even though the company has developed significantly since 2010, it still maintains a Youtube account. The main difference is that the company now has multiple Youtube channels for school children in grades 6 through 8, with titles like Unacademy JEE, Unacademy UPSC, and others.
Content marketing – Whether it’s for the business or content, Unacademy excels in marketing. It uses a variety of cutting-edge marketing strategies to promote its content. It also employs social media marketing, email marketing, and advertisements on its own and other websites to create leads, among other things.
A tiny subsection of employee, contractor, and educator positions was re-evaluated due to role duplication and effectiveness, it is usual for any organization of our size and complexity, depending on the outcomes of many assessments. “In good conscience, the company has assured they get certain additional perks and a substantial severance,” claimed an Unacademy spokeswoman, alluding to the organization’s outstanding “achievement” and “transparency.” The company also stated that it hoped to become profitable by the end of the year.
Unacademy used to have a monthly energy output of around $15 million until recently, which will now be decreased as part of expense measures that will also affect certain marketing campaigns.
Munjal told ET on Unacademy’s $440 million funding round that the company plans to create new lines of business in categories like jobs and recruiting, where it will battle with companies like Naukri.com and LinkedIn. It will also roll out creator-led short courses and expand existing businesses like exam prep and K to 12 programs (kindergarten to class 12) coaching.
“We want to be a technological firm having a broad range of consumer internet products.” In edtech, for example, we’ll delve into two topics: K-12 and careers. Then there are two sectors in upskilling and higher ed that we want to push — degrees and straight jobs,” Munjal said.
The cost-cutting initiative at Unacademy aims to concentrate on the company’s core businesses. As a result, it chose closing of Master, a children’s skills program, with its K-12 enterprises.