Indian education giant Byju’s has acquired Epic, a digital reading platform for children aged 12 and under, for $500 million.

Epic’s offering is built on a collection of 40,000-plus books, audiobooks and videos from more than 250 publishers. Its global user-base includes more than two million teachers and 50 million children, which Epic claims has more than doubled over the past year. The company is headquartered in Redwood City, California,

Suren Markosian, Epic’s chief executive and co-founder Kevin Donahue, will remain in their roles.

Byju Raveendran, founder and chief executive of Byju’s, said: “Our partnership with Epic will enable us to create engaging and interactive reading and learning experiences for children globally. Our mission is to fuel curiosity and make students fall in love with learning. Knowing that Epic and its products are rooted in the same mission, it was a natural fit. Together we have the opportunity to create impactful experiences for children to become lifelong learners.”

Markosian added: “We created Epic to make quality books more accessible to kids everywhere, and to build a safe place for them to discover the joy and magic of reading in their own way. The alignment of our missions and shared passion makes Byju’s the perfect partner, as we’re confident this acquisition will ignite excitement for learning around the world. Together, we can help empower future generations of kids by fostering a lifetime love for reading and learning.”

Anita Kishore, chief strategy officer of Byju’s commented: “Epic’s model for inspiring the next generation through interactive reading is in lockstep with our mission to help millions of children become lifelong learners. We welcome Epic’s talented leadership team and employees to the Byju’s family as we endeavour to help students fall in love with learning across the world.”

Morgan Stanley is the sole financial advisor to Epic.

Bengaluru-based Byju’s backers include General Atlantic, Sequoia Capital, the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, Naspers, Silver Lake, and Tiger Global.

Date published: 22 July 2021

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