PRnewswire | May 02, 2023
Today, Stemuli—a gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development—announced the merger of Infinity.careers and Oppti into Stemuli, with all companies focused on providing career navigation tools to empower students with the skills needed to thrive in the 21st century economy.
Stemuli, led by Taylor Shead, Founder & CEO, is a Black and woman-owned company with a mission to provide a pathway to an intellectually and economically fulfilling career for all. Naomi Thomas, Founder of infinity.careers, will take on the role of Head of Digital for Stemuli, while Khiry Kemp, Co-founder of Oppti, will serve as Head of Operations. The company announced the merger was made possible because the three founders met in Jobs for the Future's (JFF) Entrepreneur in Residence incubator, led by JFFLabs, JFF's innovation lab, which brings together talented and driven entrepreneurs to collaborate and solve real-world problems.
"Stemuli is a shining example of what can happen when we bring together and incubate talented and driven entrepreneurs to collaborate and catalyze new ways to support people facing systemic barriers to advancement," said Kristina Francis, executive director of JFFLabs, JFF's innovation lab. "We are thrilled to see the success of our program in action, and we look forward to seeing the impact this merger will have on the future of learning."
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, access to capital is a major barrier for black entrepreneurs. Despite making up over 13% of the US population, Black-owned businesses only receive less than 1% of venture capital. The merger of Infinity.careers and Oppti into Stemuli highlights the power of Black founders coming together in a way that hasn't been done before, and demonstrates their commitment to creating new opportunities in the edtech space.
"This merger marks an important milestone for both black entrepreneurs and the edtech industry as a whole," said Taylor Shead, Founder and CEO of Stemuli. "We are excited to join forces and bring our collective expertise to create a company that truly empowers students and addresses the needs of the education system. We believe that education is the key to unlocking opportunities and driving social and economic mobility, and we are committed to making that a reality for students across the country."
Stemuli is a Black and woman-owned gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development.Stemuli is a Black and woman-owned gaming company at the intersection of AI, education, and workforce development. Stemuli connects students to meaningful career development experiences and maintains a portfolio of students’ every achievement, certification, and development milestones to help them showcase the to the marketplace and land the job of their dreams.
ENTREPRENEURS AND LEADERS
Globenewswire | May 09, 2023
Go1, the world’s learning content expert, announced today the acquisition of Blinkist, a mobile-first learning app that summarizes key ideas from professional books and podcasts which is used by tens of millions of people worldwide. The acquisition forms the foundation of an innovative new model of corporate learning which seeks to engage learners throughout their day-to-day lives.
Go1 has made a name for itself as an aggregator of learning and development content, offering access to tens of thousands of short-form courses that are typically consumed in a corporate setting. However, engaging learners on a grand scale relies not only on democratizing access to more types of learning content but also on making that content available in more places, meeting learners where they are. For many online corporate learners, that's on their cell phone or during their commute.
This is where Blinkist excels.The acquisition of Blinkist expands Go1’s appeal to an audience that seeks to learn new skills and stay up to date on business and self-improvement topics with bite-sized content, consumable on demand. Learners can access Blinkist content through their corporate learning management system (LMS) but, for the first time ever, they will also be able to access content on their mobile, in CarPlay, or wherever and whenever they choose to learn.
“The combination of Go1 and Blinkist offers something not replicated in any corner of the corporate learning market: an experience of ongoing learning that serves professional goals that’s purpose-built to be personally engaging,” said Andrew Barnes, co-CEO of Go1. “Go1 is not entering the content production market – we’re combining our existing content aggregation service with Blinkist’s similar service for books to open a new model for consumption of any type of learning content.”
“I have been following the Go1 journey for a number of years and believe in the impact and opportunity that education affords,” said Charles Conn, chair of Patagonia, co-founder and partner of Monograph Capital. “As a co-author of Bulletproof Problem Solving, I know first-hand how critical it is to reach a broader audience, and it is great to now have our audiobook, book summary, and short course all available through one subscription. Go1's acquisition of Blinkist will significantly expand top content offerings to its users, increasing access and knowledge from authors and researchers to empower learners and organizations across the world.”
“We're thrilled with Go1's acquisition of Blinkist," said Thilo Semmelbauer, managing director at Insight Partners. “Blinkist’s mobile content and product will expand the learning opportunities already available to Go1’s customers and create a powerful pair with Go1’s corporate learning offering. We're excited for what's to come." Insight Partners will remain an investor in the combined entity, as will Greycroft, Headline, IBB, and MGO.
Mike Bertolino, global leader of EY’s Skills Foundry which partners with Go1 for access to professional learning content, shared similar enthusiasm on the deal.“EY Skills Foundry is an upskilling and reskilling platform. We are excited about the Blinkist acquisition and the ability to now offer summaries such as Jim Collins’ ‘Good to Great’ to our customers,” said Bertolino. “We partnered with Go1 over a year ago due to the depth of their library and expertise on learning. We believe the need for upskilling and reskilling will only increase in the future as the global workforce becomes more agile. Having access to both bite-sized content and longer form courses is ideal.”
In addition to its popular consumer app, Blinkist also works with leading employers to offer leadership and skill development to their employees.
Go1 is the world’s learning content expert, aggregating content from top providers to deliver high-quality education and training across a range of industries and topics. Over 8 million learners from over 60 countries use Go1 to access curated, personalized training, and skills development courses in the formats that best suit them – all in a single solution. Home to a vast library of over 100,000 courses from hundreds of leading content partners, Go1 is a Y Combinator 2023 Top Company, an SAP Partner with an SAP Endorsed App, and an EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award Nominee. Key investors include SEEK, SoftBank Vision Fund II, M12 (Microsoft's Venture Capital Arm), Madrona Venture Group, and AirTree Ventures as well as Blinkist investors including Insight Partners, Greycroft, Headline, IBB, and MGO.
Blinkist connects people with powerful ideas from leading authors and experts to broaden perspectives, gain knowledge, and spark understanding in all areas of their life, both personal and professional. Used by over 26 million people worldwide, Blinkist finds the most relevant, impactful books and podcasts and distills them down to their key ideas, which can be read or listened to in 15-minute explainers called Blinks. In addition to individual learners, over 1,500 organizations around the globe have already chosen Blinkist for Business to empower their teams at their point of need—anytime, anywhere.
Paper | March 15, 2023
On March 14, 2023, Paper, the education support system (ESS), announced the acquisition of Readlee to address the literacy crisis. It would use Readlee's innovative learning tool, artificial intelligence and speech recognition technology to improve learners' reading skills.
According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress report, about one-third of 4th and 8th graders cannot read the basic achievement level, which is the test's lowest level. The National Center for Education Statistics data shows that about 34% of American high school students graduate with reading proficiency. Unfortunately, this proficiency decreases further to 18% for recent graduates. This data shows that the literary crisis has become a systemic issue, and there is a flaw in the current educational approach.
Master teachers collaborated with Harvard researchers to design Readlee for better learning outcomes, and it would become 'Paper Reading' after complete integration into Paper's ESS. This tool will listen to students' reading, give real-time feedback with individualized support, and measure their success. With AI and speech recognition, it approaches reading through learning science, showing that reading aloud improves vocabulary, memory, and confidence. It aims to support students throughout their academic journey and after graduation.
Co-Founder and CEO of Paper, Philip Cutler said, "This acquisition reflects our commitment to providing the academic support that empowers students throughout every stage of their learning journey. Improving literacy proficiency is an essential component of our mission, and we believe research-backed technology and repeated practice are the keys to addressing the mounting literacy crisis." He added, "We are excited to join our forces and aligned missions to have an even bigger impact on students. Our teams are already working together to change the future of education. Our mission is to help create a world where everyone has the ability to read, learn, and become a success."
(Source – Cision PR Newswire)
Headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, Paper, an e-learning solutions provider, offers services for personalized learning, tutoring, essay review, academic and student support, homework help, teacher support, remote education, teacher assistants, and virtual tutoring. It develops confidence in every student with its educational support system. It serves over 3 million students from different school districts across the United States and Canada. It provides individualized support to every learner to solve their problems and discover different ways of learning. It helps teachers and administrators review student activity and track their progress with its data-driven insights and metrics. It instantly connects students with tutors for support in their tests and assignments.