Chinese online education giant VIPKID has secured commitment from Tencent to lead the company’s latest round of financing. The two companies will cooperate in areas including online education, artificial intelligence, cloud services and public welfare.
VIPKID has maintained strong growth momentum over the past year, as the number of students on their platform exceeded 700,000 and the number of foreign North American teachers topped 90,000. The English education platform intends to use this new round of capital injection to invest in quality content, talent and technology, improve the company’s operational efficiency and organizational capabilities and provide overall better education products and services for students and parents.
Company founder and CEO, Mi Wenjuan, highlighted the future promise of online education. As the industry leader, VIPKID holds significant responsibility for advancing the quality of online education, setting a standard for competitors and disrupting traditional education models.
The latest industry projections predict that the online education market will surpass the size of the offline education market for the first time in 2022. VIPKID faces competition from other online education companies including 51Talk, Hitalkkids and Dada ABC.
It is believed that Tencent’s latest investment is a positive sign for the industry as it will increase the scale of the market generally. Mi mentioned how Tencent’s investment will help VIPKID advance their mission of creating students who are “international talents with a Chinese spirit and a global perspective.”
Wang Lixing, managing director of Huaxing Capital, the firm who is advising on the deal, explained that the pattern of online education is set to continue, with VIPKID leading the charge. He said, “The company has redefined global classrooms, and its brand awareness, teaching and research teaching system and perfect product matrix have already achieved an industry leading position. The online education pattern has emerged.”
Meanwhile, Tao Daosheng, president of Tencent Cloud, said, “Technology is the vision and mission of Tencent in the future, and education plus technology is one of the best carriers.”