Palfish, a Chinese online English learning platform, has raised $120 million in a Series C funding round to enhance its educational products and services, the company has announced recently.
The funding round was led by Chinese shopping platform Meituan-Dianping founder Tao Zhang and FutureX Capital, a consumption-based investment firm. Existing investors SIG China and Whales Capital also participated in the round. SIG had invested $5 million in Series A round in 2015, and an undisclosed amount in 2018. Whales Capital had also poured in “tens of millions of US dollars” in the company’s Series B+ round, according to the company.
Investment firm Mu Mian Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor for the deal, the company said. The Beijing-based Palfish also said that the fund raised by the company is the largest in the online English learning segment this year.
Founded by Huang He in 2017, Palfish, also known as Banyu in China, specializes in providing interactive online English classes for children up to the age of 14 years. The company has built a series of educational products, covering all ages and scenarios for children’s English learning. Some of its flagship products include Palfish Picture Book – which provides enlightenment education for young kids, Palfish Children’s English – which has one-on-one fixed foreign teachers and original textbooks, Palfish AI class and Palfish Intensive Reading – which provides all-scene English learning products and services for children aged 0 to 14.
Palfish said it currently has 40 million users, with more than 1.6 million paying users on its platform, and its team has expanded to nearly 2,000 people.
According to Palfish founder and CEO Huang He, the proceeds of the round will be used to continue to cultivate children’s English, create more product forms that meet user needs through innovation, optimize growth conversion and teaching services based on database and intelligent systems, and strive to achieve better learning results through AI and social networking.
Commenting on the investment, Zhang Qian, Founding Partner of FutureX Capital, said
“Huang He has led the team to successfully apply Bytedance’s pioneering methodology to the field of online education and has become the most powerful and potential outstanding team in the industry. The online education market is far more competitive. To win in the fierce market competition, we need to rely on the innovative ability and perseverance of the founder and the team. This is the advantage of Palfish.”
Palfish has also been backed by Jafco Ventures, Starling Ventures, and Toutou Shidao Investment in the past.