K-12 Dealmaking: brightwheel Acquires MyChild; CollegeVine Raises $3.1 Million

Contributing Writer

The month of November started off with an acquisition and an infusion of venture capital. Classroom management solution brightwheel acquired the MyChild platform, while CollegeVine, a college application mentoring solution, gained $3.1 million in funding, and a Finnish ed-tech company with a social-emotional learning tool received an initial round.

brightwheel Acquires MyChild: Early child education platform brightwheel has acquired MyChild, a paperless parent engagement tool for schools and childcare providers, according to a statement. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“MyChild has made life easier for parents and educators alike and has introduced thoughtful products to our industry,” said Dave Vasen, founder and CEO of brightwheel. “We’re excited to welcome their schools and families on board, and to continue our joint mission together.”

Earlier this year, brightwheel raised $600,000 from investors Mark Cuban and Chris Sacca via the television show Shark Tank. (See the EdWeek Market Brief story, “How I Survived the Shark Tank: An Ed-Tech Entrepreneur Speaks” for Vasen’s description of what it was like to compete on the show.)

CollegeVine Raises $3.1 Million: Ed-tech startup CollegeVine, which specializes in mentoring high school students for college applications, has closed a $3.1 million Series A funding round led by Morningside Technology Ventures with participation by New York-based University Ventures.

CollegeVine uses a “near peer” model of matching talented college students with high school students to help them with the college application process.

“With the backing of Morningside and support from University Ventures, we are now positioned to grow the company to meet consumer demand,” Jon Carson, CEO of CollegeVine, said in a statement. We plan to use the Series A investment to build out our technology platform and product suite, grow the team and accelerate our growth.”

Mightifier Raises $250,000 in First Funding Round: Finnish ed-tech startup Mighty United Oy, developer of a social-emotional learning tool dubbed Mightifier, has raised $250,000 in its first funding round, according to company founder and CEO Mervi Pänkäläinen.

Participating investors were three business angels—Pasi Joronen, Niklas Geust and Teri Heilala—xEdu start-up accelerator, and Courage Ventures Seed Fund 1, according to a statement on the company’s website.

“The Mightifier method and application have been co-created with Finnish teachers and kids, and it’s based on peer-to-peer positive feedback on classmates’ character strengths,” the company explained, adding that according to pilot results in Finland this spring, the solution improved social skills and self-esteem, decreased bullying and classroom restlessness.

The company said international pilots have already started in Chicago and Silicon Valley and more will kick off later this year in Southeast Asia.  A new release will be launched in January 2017 and the application will be available in both the AppStore and GooglePlay globally.

Be sure to check back on Marketplace K-12 for updates on mergers, acquisitions, fundraising, and other dealmaking. Also see EdWeek Market Brief, a service that gives companies operating in the market insights on the needs and priorities of school officials.

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