ah! Ventures’ Investee Co iDreamCareer.com raises Pre-Series A funding from Times Group’s Brand Capital

ah! Ventures’ Investee Co iDreamCareer.com raises Pre-Series A funding from Times Group’s Brand Capital
Highlights

DreamCareer.com (iDC), a Delhi based career planning ed-tech startup, has raised an undisclosed sum as pre-series A funding from The Times of India publisher BCCL’s

DreamCareer.com (iDC), a Delhi based career planning ed-tech startup, has raised an undisclosed sum as pre-series A funding from The Times of India publisher BCCL’s (Bennett, Coleman & Co Ltd's) strategic investment arm, Brand Capital.

Founded in late 2013 by Ayush Bansal & Pravesh Dudani, iDreamCareer.com has grown to become India’s leading EdTech brand in the space of career & higher education planning. It provides scientific and unbiased career guidance to high school & college students. Due to the dynamic changes, that India has seen in the past couple of years, the students of today are now being exposed to numerous career options, right from the time they graduate high school. Given this scenario, a product like iDreemCareer proves to be a perfect match for the educational and career counselling needs of today. The personalized program offered, handholds students over a period of 2-3 years and helps them take a successful transition from high school to college. Its program cover the entire transition which start from career exploration, identifying student’s potential, finding the right career fit ,stream selection to ultimately completing it with the college admission & selection process.

Commenting on the Times Group’s involvement in the deal, Puneet Suri, Director, Brand Capital said “Disruptive impact on higher education discovery using technology & experienced counsellors is the kind of product every parent would be happy to use and thereby ticked all the right boxes for us. The Times Group’s widely-accessed media platforms will help iDC in rapid customer adoption thus helping millions of students access unbiased quality career guidance”

Commenting about the need for such a product, Mohit Satyanand, angel investor and Board of Director at iDreamCareer.com said “A rapidly developing India is presenting today's school-leavers with a bewildering range of career and study options. Finding the right fit for their aptitude and interest should not be left to chance, but emerge from a careful study of all their options. This requires experienced counsellors, backed by a detailed and exhaustive database of the higher education scene in India. iDreamCareer has all the components in place”

Since its inception in 2013, iDreamCareer has been on an upward trajectory and has consistently shown growth par excellence. Prior to raising the current Pre-series A round of funding, the company had raised its seed round in mid-2014 from Mr G.K Sinha and subsequently raised its angel round in mid-2015 from ah! Ventures with investors Mohit Satyanand, Vivek Joshi, Indian Design Group & others participating in the deal.

Post its last round of funding in August, 2015, iDreamCareer has changed its targeting proposition and has made a complete transition to a B2C model. Sharing the rationale behind this dynamic change, Ayush Bansal, co-founder & CEO of iDreamCareer.com (iDC) says, “In Aug 2015 we made a transition to a complete B2C model and now we are organically growing 100% m-o-m to reach a strong sustainable operational profitable stage by next month. With a B2C focus Brand Capital investment would help us to create a trusted brand in the space of career planning.

Concurrently our focus is also to add complementing Ed-Tech products & tools to increase our offering horizontally. We look to invest more on research after raising a Series-A round by end of this year. With a right combination of online & offline delivery, we have successfully solved the key challenge of scalability in this space without diluting the quality. Our team is excited with the growth of the company and we look forward to build India’s first trusted career planning brand.” This bold move has resulted in the increase in its ARPU by 4X and its user base by 20X in the last 100 days.

Giving an investor's’ perspective, Harshad Lahoti, Founder & CEO of ah! Ventures, said, "iDreamCareer continues to demonstrate their ability to disrupt the market using their unique customized career planning program rather than competitors' plain vanilla assessment reports created using online aptitude tests. Tech is undoubtedly used as an enabler for automation of content and the assessment process - but iDC's mix of online and offline models of career planning through one on one sessions using their retail offices and telephonic interviews, gives a more holistic approach. This coupled with a team senior professionals and their ability to successfully penetrate the international markets made iDC a very attractive investment opportunities for ah! Ventures' investors. Also as iDreamCareer has now moved to a B2C model, Brand Capital’s investment will help it reach its target group at a much faster pace along with providing expertise on building the brand ”

Commenting on the partnership between iDreamCareer.com and ah! Ventures, Ayush Bansal, co-founder & CEO of iDC says, "At the time when we were raising our angel round, ah! Ventures was the first to recognise the potential in iDreamCareer and pushed us into the market which led to successfully closing the round. Also Team ah! has been supporting us further in business development and also as a responsible stakeholder in the startup ecosystem."

As part of its next growth phase iDreamCareer is planning to raise ~$5 MN as part its Series A round by the end of this year. The new funds shall be utilized to expand its presence in 15 cities in India & Middle East and to develop complementing products in the form of assessment and mentoring tools.

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