The numbers definitely paint a clear picture – equity and venture financing for education technology companies has grown by more than 50% from the year 2013 to year 2014 and has reached the figure of nearly $1.87 billion in 2014, according to CB Insights, a venture capital database.
When compared to other tech industries, this is still a small change, but on the other hand, these are the largest numbers since 2009, when CB Insights first started monitoring the industry. Three of the projects that have attracted the largest investments are Pluralsight, Remind and Edmodo.
Pluralsight is a Utah-based company which provides online professional training to technology industry employees and it raised $135 million. They held the record for the year 2014.
Remind is a free messaging service aimed at teachers and enabling them to communicate with students and parents alike. They received a $40 million financing deal from various venture capital firms, most notably Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
The third of these, Edmodo is an online social network which has been adapted for classroom use and which requires no payment from individual teachers. They raised $30 million in financing last year.
The investors are saying that they are more than willing to invest further in education tech companies and projects but that there are some factors which are holding them back somewhat, such as the issue of monetization and the often crusty and ineffective education bureaucracy which becomes involved on all the levels, from local to federal.
Despite these, we are already seeing the more traditional investors becoming involved, such as Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, which can only spell good news for the developers and, ultimately, teachers and students.