Bernau bei Berlin, 15 October 2014 – iversity.org, the leading European online platform for higher education, closes a new internal financing round with the current investors, in which T-Venture significantly extends its commitment to the company.
With the closing of the new financial round, iversity has now received more than €5 million in venture capital since its foundation. The financial support of bmp media investors and BFB Frühphasenfonds, and the significantly increased contribution from T-Venture, allows iversity to strengthen its leadership in the field of online education.
Exactly one year ago today, on 15 October 2013, iversity launched its platform for online courses, or MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), pivoting from its initial business model as a Learning Management System in 2011. Since then, iversity has attracted nearly 700,000 enrolments in 51 online courses and cooperates with more than 30 partners, mainly European universities. iversity’s partnerships include renowned institutions such as the University of Padua, the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, the European University Institute and the RWTH Aachen. The online education company is currently in talks with over 100 universities that have expressed interest in making their course offerings available online.
Hannes Klöpper, iversity’s co-founder and Managing Director, explains the renewed financial commitment by the company’s shareholders: “The new contribution from our investors demonstrates their confidence in our team and our mission: to make higher education more accessible, affordable, and personalised than ever before. Because online learners on our platform can have their academic achievements recognised within the European Transfer System (ECTS), our product offering seamlessly integrates into the European higher education landscape. The market for digital education services is vast.” iversity’s second Managing Director, Sander Nijssen, discusses the next steps for iversity that lie ahead: “The new funding enables us to systematically enhance the functionality of our platform, attract new university partners and increase our userbase.”
Axel Nitsch, Senior Investment Manager at T-Venture, is excited about the new opportunities that the financing round will offer iversity: “In just one year, iversity established itself as the trendsetting player in the European market for online higher education. We are impressed by the extent to which the dedicated iversity team has managed to inspire leading course instructors and enthusiastic online learners from almost every country in the world. With this financing round, Hannes, Sander and the entire team will lift the company to a new level.”
With the fresh capital, iversity will hire more employees. A recent addition to the team is Veit Mürz, the new Director of Marketing, who has founded and built the SaaS provider, Classmarkets, out of the Rocket Internet incubator.
In order to support the needs of the growing team, the company opened another office in the Berlin startup district, Prenzlauer Berg. Besides the company headquarters in Brandenburg’s Bernau bei Berlin, the company is also now located in the former “Humboldt transformer station”, a building complex from the 1920s, named after the founding father of the Berlin University, Wilhelm von Humboldt.
iversity.org is an online platform for higher education courses. It enables a global community of learners to take courses from excellent teachers and universities from around the world. iversity is funded by T-Venture, bmp media investors and the BFB Frühphasenfonds.
T-Venture Holding GmbH was founded in 1997 as a 100% subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom AG. Since then, T-Venture invests in young companies with an above-average growth potential that enable economic and technological synergies with the business units of Deutsche Telekom. The headquarters is in Bonn. They are supported and complemented by T-Venture of America, Inc. in San Francisco. Investment activities focus on Europe, the United States and Israel.
About bmp media investors
The venture capital company bmp media investors AG (ISIN DE0003304200) has been investing in growth companies in the field of media and marketing services in Germany and Poland since 1997; it focuses on companies in the seed, start-up and expansion stages. Its successful exits include eProfessional, Gamigo, YOC, K2 Internet, Bankier, Nokaut, nugg.ad and mbr Targeting. In its current portfolio are companies such as Betegy, brand eins, castaclip, dailyme.tv, komoot, Retresco and Tweek.
About BFB Frühphasenfonds Brandenburg GmbH
BFB Frühphasenfonds Brandenburg GmbH invests in young, innovative companies in the region of Brandenburg with the goal of strengthening the equity base of these companies at an early stage. The total fund of €25 million is designed and built by the Investitionsbank des Landes Brandenburg (ILB) on behalf of the Ministry for Economics and European Affairs of Brandenburg (MWE). 75% of the funds are provided by the European Regional Development Fund (EFRE) and 25% provided by the Brandenburg State. bmp AG manages the fund. (www.fruehphasenfonds-brandenburg.de)