According to Reuters, Amazon.com is planning to launch a local services marketplace later this year, and the company is already in talks with startups in Seattle and San Francisco that provide such offerings.
Could this eventually lead to 1-click tutoring services? Given that Amazon acqui-hired TeachStreet back in February 2012 and folded it into the AmazonLocal team this seems likely.
Local marketplaces in the education space have seen growing interest from users and investors alike with WyzAnt being the most prominent one in the US right now. Launched in 2005 the founders Andrew Geant and Mike Weishuhn grew the company to over $20 million in annual revenue before raising a $21.5 million Series A in December 2013 and acquiring the assets of Tutorspree, another tutoring marketplace in January 2014.
Yet another competitor in the space is Takelessons which has raised a total of $20 million since its launch in 2006 and acquired its smaller competitor Betterfly.
With Amazon.com entering the space, possibly fueled with the knowledge and contacts of the ex-TeachStreet team, more consilidation might happen down the line. If it’s true that Amazon is going to work together with existing marketplaces, this could also result in a big push for participating edtech startups.
According to Reuters, offering local services on Amazon’s website has been a goal of Chief Executive Jeff Bezos for years. Giving Amazon buyers the option to shop for piano or language lessons besides home repair, massages and hair cuts seems obvious in this scenario.
- Exclusive: Amazon.com plans local services marketplace this year – sources | Reuters
- The fable of WyzAnt and the grasshopper | Crain’s Chicago Business
- TeachStreet “Acqhired” by Amazon – Shuts Down February 15th | EDUKWEST
- HEDLINE: TakeLessons raises $7 million led by Lightbank | EDUKWEST
Picture “Amazon Packaging” by Nic Taylor, Some Rights Reserved