ducation Startup Playto Labs has raised over Rs 4 crore in a Seed round led by Inflection Point Ventures, one of India’s largest angel investment platforms. The funds raised will be used in building a strong team and expanding its customer base. With Playto Labs, parents are excited to see their children develop curiosity and confidence towards science and technology by building innovative projects in hands-on, highly engaging modules.
The round also saw individual participation from partners of the upcoming fund Disruptors Capital, including Raj Snehil Juneja (Chief Investment Officer), Krishna Kumar (Founder, Simplilearn), Kunal Walia (Founder, Simpliwork) and Shashwat Kumar (Managing Partner, Khetal Advisors), and entrepreneurs including Tonmoy Shingal and Ketan Kapoor (Founders, Mettl), Sachin Sharma (Founder, Townscript), Rajesh Razdan (Founder, Devtron Labs) and Kuldeep Dhankar (SVP, CleverTap) among others.
Vinay Bansal, Founder & CEO, Inflection Point Ventures says, “Our children are growing in the age of technology and get comfortable with using gadgets much before they learn to speak. Playto model is helping parents and their children to harness technology in a much more positive way where kids are learning something new and keeping themselves engaged in a constructive manner. Given the technology exposure in India, this is a booming market which got us interested in backing Playto.”
Jignesh Kenia, Lead Investor, Inflection Point Ventures shares, "The penetration of technology in the country has helped kids learn sooner than their age. Playto Labs is helping kids learn robotics with the right blend of toys, personal facilitators and gamification. Every assignment helps them connect to a real-life case study and that’s really exciting. The concept is to make kids ready for the future, especially in the areas of product development and engineering. Engaging with these assignments, the startup is helping kids develop practical skills, which have today become extremely important along with their schooling. This unique approach increased our confidence to back Playto Labs."
Playto Labs has a combination of hardware toys and online 1-1 sessions with teachers who act as facilitators. Their pedagogy makes students feel like they are playing vs studying and helps them become creative and innovative problem solvers. The team is passionate about experiential learning and has earlier built Skyfi Labs, where they developed 100+ classroom and online experiential learning programs for UG-level students in technology. These programs had 400,000+ enrolments from 65 countries.
Pavan Ponnaganti, Founder & CEO, Playto Labs, an IIT Kanpur alum says, “Toys are a great way of learning for kids. My daughter (3 yo) has learned many things just by playing with toys, although she hasn’t gone to pre-school due to Covid. But toys are unable to keep up with the learning needs of children as they grow up after 7 years of age. As a result, kids only depend on their school to learn.”
“Through Playto Labs, we are building products to address this and make play a more relevant learning method for kids above 7 years. The goal is to make kids truly enjoy science and tech, and we believe that is how the real innovators of the future will emerge. We currently offer Robotics products for kids, and we are delighted with the feedback we have been receiving from students and parents across the globe. We are launching more products soon.”, he adds.
Within a year of launching, Playto Labs products for kids already have paying customers from 33 countries, and have seen strong month-on-month growth. Kids love these products, and the same is evident as more than half of its customers have come from word of mouth and organic channels.
With the number of students in India studying in grades 1-7 join online learning (soon to cross 40 million), Playto Labs expects a strong demand for highly engaging products that kids love and will make them future-ready. In addition, Playto Labs also sees an excellent response for its products in the overseas markets. Globally, educational toys market is expected to reach $34bn by 2025 as per a report by Orbis Research.
About Playto Labs
Playto Labs was launched in 2020 by IIT Kanpur graduates to help students become future-ready through hands-on learning. The team earlier built Skyfi Labs, where they developed 100+ project-based courses in engineering subjects for UG-level students, which saw enrollments from 400,000+ students across 65 countries. With such an expertise, they recently launched educational toy products for kids aged 8-16.
Inflection Point Ventures is an angel investing platform with over 4800 CXOs, HNIs and Professionals to together invest in startups. The firm supports new-age entrepreneurs by providing them monetary & experiential capital and connecting them with a diverse group of investors. IPV, started in 2018 believes that ‘Everyone can Grow with Startups’ as it plans to invest INR 155 Cr in 2021 across 60 startups.