Bangalore-based edtech startup Newton School has raised $650,000 in a seed round of funding led by early-stage venture capital firm Nexus Venture Partners.
The round also saw participation from Unacademy founders Gaurav Munjal, Roman Saini and Hemesh Singh, US-based startup platform AngelList, Srinivas Anumolu, founder of Upwork, veteran educationists Ajay Gupta and Sahil Aggarwal, and K. Ganesh, founder of GrowthStory.
Founded in 2019 by serial entrepreneurs and college friends Nishant Chandra and Siddharth Maheshwari, Newton School is an online edtech platform that trains people to be highly skilled software developers and get them placed in top companies and startups as frontend, backend and full stack software developers among other roles. It has a 6-month long online training program with a unique pay after placement model under which the students are charged zero fees until they are placed with a minimum package of 6 LPA.
Newton School aims to transform India into a global developer powerhouse through its highly personalized training platform.
Speaking about the company, Siddharth Maheshwari, Co-founder, Newton School, said:
“While software engineering is one of the highest paying and fastest growing career paths, access to quality software development training remains limited to students of few top colleges. With our unique pay after placement online platform we are democratizing software development training and allowing people to cross financial and location barriers to achieve their dream of becoming a great software developer. Recently, Rohit – son of an auto driver who had lost his livelihood due to Corona – got placed in one of the top startups of India. He will now be able to take care of his family and pay off their loans. There are many students like him who have tripled or even quadrupled their salaries in just 6 months of studying on our platform.”
Newton School will use the fresh capital to strengthen its product and expand its team, according to a press statement.
Commenting on the funding, Pratik Poddar, Principal, Nexus Venture Partners, said:
“We have known Nishant and Siddharth for sometimes and love their grit and passion for education. Nishant was known as an exceptional leader since his Unacademy days where he worked across content, pedagogy and operations. With their product and community first thinking, within the first few months of execution, Newton School is showing great results and creating meaningful impact in lives of software engineering graduates and making hiring of great tech talent easier for companies. We look forward to the journey with Newton School where they are building an online academy and solving the deep problem of employability of graduates.”
Newton School claims to receive thousands of applications for each batch. The training program includes 1000+ hours of coding, 50+ hours of soft skills training, live projects, and personal mentorship from mentors working in top tech companies.
While the placements at colleges are halted due to the pandemic, Newton School claims its first batch graduated recently with 90% placement rate, with alumni working in companies like Unacademy, Rapido, Toppr, etc. Newton School aims to have 10,000 students placed by 2021. The startup also hosts a monthly Newton’s coding challenges and free courses.
Explaining how the platform prepares students for high paying jobs, Nishant Chandra, Co-founder, Newton School, said:
“Millions of students every year go to engineering colleges with outdated curriculums which teach coding using pen and paper and have little relevance to industry requirements. This results in a meagre 3% employability for new age jobs even after spending lakhs of rupees. Newton School has developed a cutting edge curriculum and interactive products that allow students to practice coding and get instant feedback, build live industry oriented projects and get it reviewed by top software developers, making them ready for high paying jobs.”
With a highly capital efficient business model, Newton School claims to close to breakeven just after a few months of operations and is on the path to become profitable in the next couple of months. According to Nishant, the company already has 500 students studying on its platform and it plans to scale it to 10,000 within next year, thus having larger intake than all IITs combined.
With the latest funding, Newton School plans to further evolve its platform and increase its user capacity to handle thousands of simultaneous learners. The company also plans to prioritize the development of products utilizing artificial intelligence to streamline and personalize the learning journey of each student.