The Technology Strategy Board together with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills launched a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition to further stimulate the development of education technology products in the UK.
Through this SBRI competition organisations can attract a 100% funded development contract of up to £80k (inclusive of VAT) and projects will last up to six months. The Technology Strategy Board and BIS are to invest a total of up to £1.1 million through the competition.
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Questions and answers site Quora raised $80 million Series C led by Tiger Global, with re-investment from existing investors Peter Thiel, Matrix Partners, Benchmark and North Bridge Venture Partners.
Quora had previously raised $50 million in 2012 at a reported valuation of $400 million.
This new investment could be the last or may be sufficient for Quora to break even and eventually become profitable. The company plans to stay independent, however not go public in the midterm.
New York startup Flatiron School raised a $5.5 million Series A for its coding courses that turn newcomers into professional programmers in just four months. The funding round was lead by Charles River Ventures and Matrix Partners with participation of Box Group and a group of angel investors.
Funds will be used to provide top teacher training and to experiment with courses.
Pluralsight, a Salt Lake City-based online training platform for technology professionals, acquired Digital-Tutors, an online training platform for creative professionals for $45 million.
Digital-Tutors CEO and Founder Piyush Patel will join Pluralsight as the senior VP of creative operations along with company’s entire team of 30 employees.
Booktrack, a startup that enhances ebooks by means of sound effects, music and ambient sound, raised a $3 million funding round from Sparkbox Venture with participation of existing investors Valar Ventures and Park Road Associates Ltd.
This funding round will be used for Booktrack’s newly created Booktrack Classroom that aims at the education market. Booktrack had previously raised $2 million in venture funding from a group of investors including Peter Thiel.
Kuailexue, a Chinese startup that builds a mobile Q&A platform for students around smartphones, raised a $5 million Series A led by Matrix Partners China, with follow-on funding from Crystal Stream reports Tech In Asia.
Quad Learning, a platform that aims to help students to transition from community colleges to four-year institutions, raised a $10 million Series B reports Washington Business Journal. MentorTech Ventures and student loan guarantor ECMC joined existing investors SWaN & Legend Venture Partners, New Enterprise Associates and CNF Investments, among others.
This Series B brings the total funding raised by Quad Learning to $21 million. The startup previously raised a $10 million Series A in early 2013.
UK-based Learning Technologies Group plc (LTG), parent company of Epic, announced the acquisition of LINE Communications for £9 million. £5.1m will be paid in cash and £3.9m in new LTG shares.
Combined LINE and Epic will form the UK market leader in the e-learning custom content market according to the press release. The senior management team of LINE, including Piers Lea, its CEO, will remain with the business.
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Mumbai-based financial services training provider EduPristine announced that it has completed a $1.5 million Series A round. The investment was raised from Accel Partners and divided into three tiers of $500k in 2011, 2012 and 2013.
The startup had previously raised an undisclosed amount of angel funding from Mark Mobius and Rajesh Sehgal. The two angel investors didn’t take part in the Series A.
Here is our new weekly rundown of EdTech Startup News beyond funding, IPOs or mergers and acquisitions.
This week we cover Technology Transfer Services, a company that aims to use VR goggles in HR training, Experfy which wants to build a “McKinsey in the cloud”, Lingua.ly that wants to turn the Internet into a language learning textbooks and two partnerships: Mathspace with Pearson and Timbuktu Labs with De Agostini Libri .