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EdTech Platform Habitat Raises INR 5 Cr From Unitus Ventures & Whiteboard Capital

Ed-tech start-up Habitat, founded by Rohit Pande and Shikhar Sachan in 2016, raises seed funding of INR 5 Cr from Unitus Ventures & Whiteboard Capital and plans to utilize this fund to develop its technology, strengthen its team as well as introduce new languages on its platform, which currently features Hindi and English.

December 1st 2020, Chennai: Habitat, an interactive social ed-tech platform for civil servant aspirants, has raised Rs 5 crore in its seed funding round from Unitus Ventures and Whiteboard Capital. This is the impact firm's second investment in the EdTech space this year. Earlier this year, Unitus backed Masai School as part of the start-up’s Series A round of funding.

Habitat is planning to employ these funds into tech development and team strengthening. The funding is also going to be directed towards plans leading to the introduction of numerous languages on the platform to widen the range from the present options of Hindi and English. The focus is said to be on the construction of a product that meets the expectations of the users by creating a communication-first paradigm in both arts and science. According to the start-up, about 70% of the users were unsuccessful in managing their exam preparations alongside work or studies and Habitat offered a personalised and mentor-assisted approach through interactive chats, producing notably better scores in the exams.

Founded by Rohit Pande and Shikhar Sachan in 2016 and operated by Apeirogon Technologies Pvt Ltd, Habitat presently has more than 10,000 subscribers and about 60% of the registered users are from Tier-II and Tier-III cities. It provides information-heavy exam segments (UPSC, state PCS, RBI, etc.) using machine learning and natural language processing for interactive learning then centralizes the learning activities like discussions, doubt-solving, assistive learning, study-plan iterations, on-demand lectures, notes sharing, assessments, etc. under one platform. The start-up claims that learning also happens outside the conventional classrooms, with students interacting among themselves and with teachers and it has tried to take this interactive-based learning to a virtual and tech-assisted platform. 

"The future of learning is co-creation," stated Rohit, “Habitat puts forth a communication-first pedagogy and centralises all learning activities like discussions, clearing doubts, study-plan iterations, on-demand lectures, notes sharing, and assessments. Think of an organised cluster of WhatsApp or Telegram groups with your chosen mentor creating lectures on the go with you. That’s the learning “habitat” for you.” he added. 

Will Poole, the managing partner of Unitus Ventures, said “EdTech is a burgeoning sector, with mobile-first learning leading the growth. Habitat engages learners like no other, producing measurable outcomes that play a profound role in motivating competitive aspirants. We are excited about the future this sector is bringing in, and are pleased to support innovative EdTech solutions like Habitat that keep up with the ever-evolving learning patterns.”

Competitors like Byju’s is close to raising US$200 million in a fresh funding round from US investment firms BlackRock and T. Rowe Price at a valuation of $12 billion and Unacademy recently raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Tiger Global Management and Dragoneer Investment Group and also joined the unicorn club in September, following a US$150 million fundraise led by SoftBank. According to a report from RedSeer and Omidyar Network India, India’s EdTech market is expected to reach US$3.5 billion by 2022.


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