K-12 Dealmaking: Kaplan Launches New Practice in U.S.; BoomStartup Taking Ed Tech Accelerator Applications

Contributing Writer

The ed-tech sector has seen recent investments by Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg and Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who were among those providing $6.4 million to Ellevation, a company focused on building the skills of English-language learners.

In addition, BoomStartup announced it will be applications for its ed-tech accelerator program, and Kaplan launched a new global leadership and professional development practice.

Here’s a roundup of the past week’s activity:

Udemy Acquires Talentbuddy. Udemy, a San Francisco-based online provider of courses, acquired Talentbuddy, a platform for programmers and others to acquire skills.

Talentbuddy offers courses and mentorship programs to help developers learn to create complex Web applications. Udemy boasts that it offers 40,000 courses in 190 countries, with more than 10 million students enrolled.

In a blog post, Talentbuddy officials said the move would allow them “continue to enable millions of students to build their programming skills using interactive learning experiences.” They thanked their investors to date, who have included Version One, BDC Capital and Highline.

NewSchools Ignite Offers Grants for Ed Tech in Math. NewSchools Ignite, an accelerator connected to Oakland, Calif.-based NewSchools Venture Fund, said it will award $1.5 million in competitive grants to ed-tech companies focused on high-quality math products for middle and high school students.

Last year NewSchools Ignite staged a competition  in science, which drew 119 applicants. Fifteen for-profit and nonprofit providers were chosen.

Kaplan Launches U.S. Global Leadership and Professional Development Practice: The new practice will initially be based in New York City with plans to expand to other U.S. cities where Kaplan already maintains other operations and educational services, the company said in a statement.

“Extending Kaplan’s successful global practice into the United States further enhances our ability to serve and meet the global professional development needs of global corporations, especially in the banking, finance and accounting sectors,” said Andrew Temte, president of Kaplan Professional Education.

He noted that the company already provides professional development services to numerous Fortune 500 companies  in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

BoomStartup Accepting Applications for Ed Tech Accelerator: The Salt Lake City-based startup accelerator will be accepting applications until March 1 for its ed-tech accelerator program, set to begin on March 28, according to a statement. BoomStartup completed its inaugural ed-tech cohort last November, raising over $1.5 million.

Each startup will receive $20,000 in seed funding and over $400,000 of in-kind services.

Past participants in the accelerator include CrowdSchool, Circll, Imaginie and WriteWell.

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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