NEW YORK, July 24, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- SKILLSHARE, the online learning community with thousands of classes in creative, business and tech disciplines, today announced it has closed $28 million in new financing. The new round includes $20 million in equity funding as well as $8 million in venture debt. Union Square Ventures, who previously participated in Skillshare's earlier funding rounds, led the equity portion of the financing. Also participating were Burda Principal Investments as well as existing investors Amasia and Spero Ventures.
Skillshare will use the financing to accelerate growth and expand its learning ecosystem, which serves the growing independent workforce. "This round comes at a time in our company's history where we're seeing a lot of momentum," said Matt Cooper, CEO of Skillshare. "Over the last twelve months we've experienced greater than 100% revenue growth, much of which was driven by what we call the 'Independent Class.' This group is made up of the fast-growing freelance workforce as well as entrepreneurs and other independent-minded individuals who realize the necessity of continuous learning in today's rapidly changing economy. As these groups make up larger segments of the overall population, our platform will continue to gain traction."
Currently, Skillshare's platform boasts over 5 million users and over 20,000 classes taught by a network of 6,000 experts across dozens of fields. "Skillshare's subscription model and affordable price make its ever-growing catalog of classes broadly accessible," commented Albert Wenger, managing partner at Union Square Ventures. "That's a powerful model as it keeps the price of marginal usage at zero, allowing members to try classes risk-free and explore new paths of learning across a wide number of disciplines. In that regard, it's like a Netflix for learning. Additionally, as Skillshare's member base has grown, its platform has begun to evolve into a thriving online community where members gain value not just from taking classes, but also by collaborating and interacting with each other."
Joining Skillshare's existing investors for this latest round was Burda Principal Investments, the investment arm of Hubert Burda Media, one of Germany's largest media and tech companies. "We are excited to partner with Skillshare," said Christian Teichmann, managing partner at Burda Principal Investments. "The Skillshare platform, particularly its subscription-based marketplace model and premium video content, are both strong differentiators and core to our investment strategy, and we look forward to working with the Skillshare team to further scale and expand their business."
Skillshare raised its Series B round in May of 2016. To date, the company has raised a total of $42 million in equity financing.
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Skillshare (www.skillshare.com) is an online learning community with thousands of classes in design, business, technology and more. Founded in 2010, the Skillshare community is comprised of over 5 million students and thousands of teachers, from 100+ countries, who come to the open-platform to learn cutting-edge skills, network with peers and discover new opportunities. Students can enroll in hundreds of free classes, or unlock unlimited access to the full class catalog by upgrading to Premium for a low, monthly rate. Skillshare teachers include both industry leaders (such as author and speaker Simon Sinek and notable designer Aaron Draplin) and talented practitioners who have built a following and a significant passive income stream through the site.
ABOUT UNION SQUARE VENTURES:
Union Square Ventures is a thesis-driven venture capital firm that invests in technology companies that broaden access to knowledge, capital, and well-being. Their active portfolio consists of more than 75 portfolio companies, each of which leverage networks, platforms, or protocols to build trusted brands. The six-person partnership at USV manages over $1B across seven funds. Notable exits include Twitter, Etsy, Twilio, Lending Club, and MongoDB.
ABOUT BURDA PRINCIPAL INVESTMENTS:
Burda Principal Investments, a division of Hubert Burda Media, provides long term growth equity for fast growing digital technology companies including marketplaces, direct-to-consumer and digital networks. BPI is a partner for visionary entrepreneurs and internet-centric businesses, leveraging Burda's capital, brands and sector expertise, particularly in the areas of business expansion, internationalization and localization. BPI has invested in a portfolio of highly successful consumer internet companies in Europe, the U.S. and Asia. Examples include Etsy, Baublebar, M.Gemi, Notonthehighstreet, Vinted, nebenan.de or Zilingo.
Julian Thomas, Media Relations
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