Unacademy plans foray into study abroad and higher education segments
unicorn edtech an academy is considering expanding into new categories such as financial education, study abroad, and higher education, among others.
Vivek Sinha, COO, Unacademy said Activity area that the company’s plan for the future is to grow with a focus on profitability. “Keeping this top-level view, the focus will be on adding new categories that are large in size and with decent margins,” he added.
As part of its growth plans, Unacademy also plans to enter adjacent markets outside of India. Although the international expansion is not expected in the immediate 90 days, Sinha said Unacademy is not scratching it from the plan for this year (2022).
“We are evaluating all sorts of expansion opportunities and are slowly and cautiously investing in those projects as well,” he added. The company is also planning an IPO within the next two years.
Over the past few months, Unacademy has focused on profitability and also cut costs in the face of a global funding crisis. Similar to other edtech unicorns, Unacademy also laid off hundreds of employees and implemented various cost-cutting measures to focus on profitability and increase efficiency.
Some of these measures included pay cuts for founders and management, the shutdown of the global test preparation platform Unacademy, and the elimination of free meals and snacks, among others. In July, CEO Gaurav Munjal asked employees in a company-wide Slack message to develop frugality as a core value.
Speaking about the transition to such a frugal operating style, Sinha said, “Fixing cost structures and aiming for profitability while growing is of course difficult. The good part is that we were able to maintain our income while becoming efficient. Our cost structure has This has improved a lot. It took quite a bit of maneuvering but it wasn’t extremely difficult as our unit economy still made sense.
He added that Unacademy is present in 130 categories and this has proven to be a strength for the company.
Continue the efforts
Unacademy categories launched in 2020 would have become profitable. Categories that launched in 2021 are close to profitability and new categories will take time.
“We are now thinking about making the existing portfolio profitable before launching too many new categories. We have become more judgmental or cautious about which categories to launch. Let’s say if last year we were happy with a 50% success rate. year, we are aiming for a 95% success rate in launching new categories,” Sinha said.
Earlier this week, Unacademy launched 50 new YouTube channelslike IAS Icons, Tick Tock Tax and The 99 Percentile club, among others. Free content marketing on YouTube is one of the top customer acquisition channels for Unacademy, contributing over 50% of its acquisition.
“We are not a sales or street-level company. We have very few people on the sales team compared to other larger players in edtech. Likewise, our marketing spend or paid digital marketing is also very minimal compared to any other business that has revenue based on a service, so most of our revenue comes from these educational channels that distribute content for free, with these new channels we are only doing continue our efforts,” Sinha said.
September 11, 2022