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Revenue model of Unacademy – How does the leading ed-tech earn in 2021?

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With the uprising of technology and easy access to anything and everything, education has been made a lot easier and accessible too. One such education technology company that has made online learning effortless is – UNACADEMY.

You must have heard of Unacademy to be providing free courses to students to learn new and upfront skills. But if it is doing so for free, How does it earn? Let’s dive into the revenue model of Unacademy to reveal the secrets behind its revenue generation.

But, before that let’s learn a few things about Unacademy and how it functions.

What is Unacademy?

Unacademy is one of India’s largest online learning platforms. It was originally started off as a YouTube channel by Gaurav Munjal in 2010. It was later officially registered as an ed-tech company founded in 2015 by Munjal, Roman Saini, and Hemesh Singh. The company is headquartered in Bangalore.

The company, since then, has managed to hire top educators of India to provide the best learning experience. Unacademy offers study materials for classes 6 to 12 and also provides plenty of preparation for exams like JEE, NEET-UG, UPSC, and other competitive examinations.

In the name of preparation, Unacademy provides :

  1. Daily live classes where students can learn, interact and get their doubts cleared one-on-one with top leading educators.
  2. Practice sheets, lecture notes, mock tests, and quizzes in the form of PDF for daily revision so as to not restrict learning to only live classes.
  3. A subscription, which provides the students with unlimited access to all the live and recorded sessions which they can go through anytime and anywhere from whichever device they wish to.

Few facts about Unacademy


  1. Unacademy has more than 20 million students currently learning through the app, with almost 2.5K+ free live classes held every day.
  2. It has hired more than 55 thousand top-quality educators.
  3. Anybody with a smartphone and a good internet connection can learn from anywhere in the country. Also, Unacademy is making its ever possible move to reach the remotest parts of the nation.
  4. Unacademy recorded a huge spike in its revenue from 22 crores in the Financial year 2019 to 86 crores in the Financial year 2020, which is almost four times the previous ones. This makes knowing the revenue model of Unacademy more interesting.


Revenue Model of Unacademy

The revenue model of Unacademy is basically a type of Freemium Business model. A freemium business model offers a basic plan with few services and resources for absolutely free. At the same time, it offers an advanced plan with more and exclusive features in exchange for a certain fee in the name of – Premium plan.

Below are a few more points that elaborate the revenue model of Unacademy:

1. Paid live classes: All the courses at Unacademy are free and well-provided with recorded video lectures for various subjects. However, it offers paid Live classes for one-on-one doubt clearance and proper lectures through a premium subscription called Unacademy Plus.

It might also cost sometimes for some mock tests and quizzes and provide a limited number of free mock tests. Although, all the study material and recorded lectures remain free throughout.  These “paid live classes” sum up the main part of the revenue model of Unacademy.

2.YouTube channels: As we know Unacademy initially was started off as a youtube channel. Now instead of one, it has created different youtube channels for all the competitive examinations with names like Unacademy JEE, Unacademy UPSC, etc. And for all the classes from 6 standard to 8 standard.

As much as easier it has made for the students of different categories to access materials according to their needs, this move of creating different channels is a good addition to the revenue model of Unacademy. All the content on the Youtube channels posted by Unacademy is quite authentic and almost every channel has more than 500k subscribers and some have even reached 1M subscribers and have over 200 million video views. Hence, there is a possible good amount of revenue that might be generated through these channels.

3.Content Marketing:  Today if everyone, including the ones who use or do not use the resources provided by Unacademy but, still know about Unacademy, is because of its marketing.

Unacademy using a plethora of techniques through content marketing and digital marketing to attract its customers,I.e, a student or anyone who wants to learn. It uses social media marketing, email marketing, techniques of remarketing, advertisements on and of different websites to generate leads and doesn’t stop until it has converted the potential customers into permanent customers.

4.In-app Purchases: Unacademy also uses different offers regularly for different courses. These offers might include discounts on live classes, future study material, lifetime access, live mock tests and quizzes, premium content, etc. Its paid subscription offers customized services to the students, which also includes all of the above services. Hence again, attracting more and more customers.

Unacademy also offers personalized sessions with the educators wherein students have to directly pay to the educator of their choice and the company takes a cut from that payment as a platform.

Though it does offer free courses, yet these In-app purchases are a good addition to the revenue model of Unacademy. Some of these purchases are one-time and some could be valid for a certain period of time.


Now you know, after providing a lot of courses for free how exactly does Unacademy earn so much revenue for itself as a company. The revenue model of Unacademy is quite captivating, Isn’t it?

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