Online Art Education Platform Meishubao Raises $40 Million

The Tencent-backed online art education company has so far raised $114 million in its six rounds of funding.

Author: Belinda Zhou   

China's online painting learning platform Meishubao has completed a $40 million Series C+ funding round led by Tencent Holdings Ltd. (HKEX: 00700).

Shunwei Capital, backed by Hong Kong-listed Xiaomi Corp. (HKEX: 01810), Bojia Capital, BlueRun Ventures, Hony Capital, Welight Capital also participated.

So far, the Zhejiang-based online art education provider has raised $114 million in its six rounds of financing. It's the largest amount of financing for the art education sector in the country.

The proceeds will be mainly used for product upgrades, curriculum development, and internal team building, Ling Gan, the chief executive officer of Meishubao, said in the statement.

"Art education is an important part of the quality education market. We are optimistic about the innovative prospects of online art education," Haiyang Yu, the managing director of Tencent Investment, said in the statement.

"At the same time, the team has a high level of investment in the field of art education and has grown rapidly," Yu added.

Founded in 2014, Meishubao has developed five key products including for students between 3 to 18 years old. Meishubao said it has nearly 10 million users at present in 94 countries and regions, and the overall monthly revenue reached nearly 200 million yuan($28.5 million).

In 2014, the company initially developed Meishubao app for art tests preparation for art colleges. It later expanded its business to smart campus SAAS service including information management, teaching, and research, and enrollment services in 2017.

The company turned to online children art education through its new platform named "Meishubao One-On-One," in 2018 and then added  "Small Class for Meishubao" in 2019. 

The company launched a new form of systemic AI art interactive course Xiao Xiong Art in April, targeting children aged 3 to 18. Its monthly revenue exceeded 30 million yuan($4.3 million) within three months of its debut, according to the company's statement.

"The founder Ling Gan has 10 years of offline art training experience and is the first batch of mobile Internet product managers in China. He is a very rare founder with both offline art training and internet product capabilities," Tianyu Zhu, the partner of BlueRun Ventures, said.

Shared in Tencent closed at HK$546.5 per share, down 3% on Friday. The company was reported to be in advanced talks to take Chinese gaming firm Leyou Technologies Holdings Ltd. private on Friday.

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