Udemy – the Academy of You, a startup EDUKWEST covered right from the start announced a $3 million Series A round led by Lightbank, the venture fund of Groupon co-founders Eric Lefkofsky and Brad Keywell. Other investors in the round include MHS Capital and 500 Startups.
This round comes about 14 months after Udemy’s initial seed round of $1 million in August 2010. Back then, the focus of the Udemy founders was still on hiring developers and engineers to build out the platform. The new round of funding is planned for hires, marketing and business development. Quoting Gagan Biyani in the press release
“Our new investment will enable us to double down on our efforts to grow our site and expand our worldwide reach.”
That means, of course that competitors like the European startup Sclipo which launched its platform several years earlier to Udemy will now have to compete with a substantially funded and well-connected US player that aims to get its foot on the European market. Same is of course true for WizIQ in India / Asia.
Udemy offers more than 6000 courses on the platform of which 90% are accessible for free but according to the press release Udemy
… attracted tens of thousands of users, and is on track to sell more than $1 million of courses in 2011. The site is doubling its traffic and revenues every quarter.