MicroVest backs school finance company Varthana


Varthana, a Bengaluru-based school finance company, has raised $7m in funding on its mission to support affordable education in rural India.

According to a report from VC Circle, the funding was secured from MicroVest, a global investment firm based in the US.

Established in 2013, Varthana is on a mission to transform education in India by catering to needs of affordable private schools through financial assistance and academic support. Its loans are custom-built to suit the wide range of projects that help school leaders unlock their school’s potential, as well as for college-going students to achieve their educational goals.

Varthana operates in the deeper geographies of India and works among EWS (economically weaker sections), low and middle-income groups. The company has a presence in 15 states through 40 branches

In 2016, the school finance company raised Series B funding in a round led by Kaizen Private Equity and Zephyr Peacock India. Its existing investors, Elevar Equity, LGT Venture Philanthropy and Omidyar Network had also participated.

In 2017, it raised $3m from Michael and Susan Dell Foundation.

The capital from MicroVest will be deployed towards affordable education in rural India and providing loans to private schools at affordable rates.

Varthana also wants to deploy the funding to support schools that are recovering from the disruptions caused by covid.

Steve Hardgrave, Varthana co-founder and chief executive officer, said, “After two years of battling COVID-19, schools have shown positive signs of growth and sustenance. Our aim is to serve more than 10,000 schools by the end of this financial year.”

Last year, Jodo, a Bangalore-based FinTech that helps families pay tuition fees, raised $15m in Series A funding. The FinTech offers a suite of payment and lending products with the aim of making fee payments more convenient and affordable for parents and students while making fee collection hassle-free for education institutions.

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