With a loss of Rs 4,588 crore, Byju’s FY21 report card has many red marks

The most valuable start-up in India and provider of education technology, Byju’s, reported on Wednesday that its fiscal year 2020–21 (FY21) revenue was Rs 2,428 crore and its loss was Rs 4,588 crore. Because start-ups are evaluated on their ability to grow and expand, the sales are 3% lower than they were the previous year, and the loss has increased 15 times from Rs 300 crore in 2019–20.

Due to the increased scrutiny surrounding the results, which were released 18 months after the coverage period ended in March 2021, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs requested an explanation from the corporation. Byju’s reportedly missed three or four deadlines it set for itself to announce its results because its auditor did not approve the accounting. In a press release on Wednesday, it stated that Deloitte Haskins & Sells, the audit company, had given the FY21 statistics an unqualified assessmenByju Raveendran, the company’s founder and CEO, claimed there was strong commercial growth in FY21 during an interview with Business Standard. Although expenses were not deferred, over 40% of the revenue was because this was the first year that new revenue recognition began as a result of a change in Covid’s business model.

“If not, the growth would have been between 60% and 65%. The expenses for the revenue that was delayed have already been deducted from the revenue in FY21, hence the loss has grown, according to Raveendran.

According to sources, Raveendran briefed board members and shareholders on the discrepancy between forecast and audited revenue figures. BlackRock, Sequoia Capital, T Rowe Price, and General Atlantic were all present during the conversation.

High-voltage purchases that have yet to start appearing as assets on the balance sheet also had an impact on Byju’s. The number of acquisitions grew this year, Raveendran noted, adding that these were loss-making, fast-growing additions that were escalating the consolidated deficit.

The corporation published unaudited figures that show close to Rs 10,000 crore in gross revenues, raising hopes for the next year, 2021–2022. Its K–12 education sector is expanding quickly. The company reported that between April and July of current year, revenues were Rs. 4,530 crore.

In response to the Covid-19 outbreak, Byju’s went on an acquisition binge both inside and outside of India. Some of these transactions were the $600 million purchase of Singapore-based Great Learning and the $1 billion purchase of Aakash Educational Services, a major force in professional and higher education.

Two other significant transactions included the purchase of the digital reading platform Epic from the United States for $500 million and the coding school WhiteHat Jr from Mumbai for $300 million.

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