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June 10, 2010

Kaplan Launches Venture Arm To Invest In Education Start-Ups

Ty McMahan:

As venture capitalists turn more attention to education innovation, Kaplan Inc. has launched its own venture arm to look at student-serving start-ups.

Kaplan VC LLC is a subsidiary designed to identify and develop innovative learning strategies, technologies and products with the power to transform education world-wide. The investment group will look to invest between $500,000 and $10 million in companies focused on education technology and student outcomes, Kaplan Chief Executive Andrew Rosen said.

The new group will be led by Jason Palmer, who assumes the position of senior vice president, Kaplan Ventures.

Investment in education companies is growing steadily as new Internet technologies and devices allow for new ways to educate. Venture capitalists have poured money into textbook, language learning and learning collaboration companies, betting that adoption across the tens of thousands of school districts in the U.S. alone could create the next wave of billion-dollar companies.

Eight companies providing education training, software and services were funded by venture capitalists in the first quarter for a total of about $57 million, according to VentureSource, an industry tracker owned, like this newsletter, by Dow Jones & Co. That was about $14 million more than was invested in the same number of companies in the first quarter a year ago. Fourth-quarter investment was also strong, with $53 million invested in 11 companies.

Posted by Jim Zellmer at June 10, 2010 2:14 AM
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