ISB alumni at centre of billion dollars deal

  Written by : IANS Updated: Wed, Apr 07, 2021, 01:44 PM

Hyderabad, April 7 (IANS) The alumni of the Indian School of Business (ISB) is at the centre stage of a one billion dollar deal between Aakash Educational Services Limited (AESL) and BYJU's.

India's leading edtech startup BYJU's on Monday announced that it is acquiring AESL, an offline test prep leader.

Aakash Chaudhry, MD, AESL, is an alumnus of Indian School of Business (ISB) and along with his father J.C. Chaudhry has scripted the success of AESL.

This strategic partnership will redefine educational services in the country and make students and young minds future-ready. In the rapidly evolving educational set-up and with increased focus on digitalization, this new strategic partnership augurs well in facilitating holistic and integrated learning for the students, the ISB said on Wednesday.

It is also noteworthy that Phoenix Advisers, who were the exclusive advisors in the deal for AESL, is also an ISB alumnus company.

Amit Khanna, ISB alumnus, is the MD of Phoenix Advisers. Another ISB alumnus, Amit Jain, Ex Senior MD, Blackstone, played a key role in the previous funding round in AESL.

Aakash Chaudhry, Amit Jain and Amit Khanna are all ISB alumni, and this partnership is a fine example of the value created out of the ISB alumni network, the business school said.

ISB has an alumni network with over 12,000 alumni and is the youngest b-school to get to 10,000 alumni.

The high-quality faculty, teaching and the strength of the alumni network are often cited as the biggest strengths of ISB by its alumni.

Expressing delight over this new strategic partnership, Professor Rajendra Srivastava, Dean, ISB underlined that a significant number of ISB alumni manage successful family businesses or have started their own ventures and have shown tremendous potential. ISB is proud to have played a small part in their success.

"I heartily appreciate team BYJU'S, AESL, Phoenix Advisers and Blackstone in forging this new strategic partnership and wish them all success in their future pursuits and endeavours," he added.

"In 2019, we partnered with Blackstone to create India's largest digitally enabled, omni-channel test preparation company. The recent $1 billion merger with BYJU's is a transformative move as it brings together two complementary and highly successful education businesses together. I will always remain indebted to ISB for the strong alumni network and skills it has given me. I look forward to contributing back to ISB, so that it can continue to impact many more lives in coming times," said Aakash Chaudhry.

According to Amit Khanna, the deal is one of the largest education deals in the world, and one which will have a far-reaching impact on the way education evolves in India and the world.

"Yet, the most important element of the deal for me was seeing the maturity with which Aakash has grown this business with sheer grit and hard work over the last 17 years and having the wisdom of knowing the right time to exit and partner with the future.

"The foundation built of trust emanates from the first woven strands in our time together on campus, and for that, I will forever be grateful to ISB," he said.