Born in 2011 out of the merger of Anthony Kuntz’s Kreactive and Thierry Debarnot’s Media Etudiant, e-learning startup digiSchool announced this week that they raised €3 million with Turenne Capital and Alto Invest. This new round of funding will enable them to reinforce their position in France via both organic and acquisition fueled growth. As mobile devices become a key part of the learning experience, Kuntz and Debarnot hope the new funding as well as their solid success in France thus far will enable them to fully capitalize on this trend and head-off global competitors.
digiSchool offers various learning tools for each educational stage from primary school through to postbaccalaureate, with the majority of their users in the 15-25 year old range. They were one of the first e-learning outfits to anticipate the eventual dominance of mobile in the learning space amongst younger generations, and seamlessly made the transition to mobile earlier on. With solid finances (€3.3 million in revenues and already profitable), 3.3 million members and the top education apps on Android and iOS (France), they’re in the nice position where they can more aggressively invest in growing their business rather than shoring up their business model. A couple of areas that they’re looking to expand into are MOOCs (massive open online courses) and adaptable, customized learning experiences based on the user’s skills and progression. In terms of MOOCs, this is clearly a hot space with leaders such as Coursera and Udemy looking to expand around the globe. This is also an area where the French educational establishment has been dragging its feet, so it’ll be good to see a French startup leading the way on this. As for adaptable learning, there’s a lot of innovation in this area and several interesting startups doing this, particularly in the serious game space (innovator Dragonbox is just one example). So there’s certainly plenty of acquisition opportunities there if they choose not to develop this in-house.
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