coursera

Widely popular U.S-based online learning platform, Coursera, has today announced that it has added a whopping $64 million to its coffers. This funding has been raised as part of the company’s Series D round, at a valuation of around $800 million — so close to becoming a unicorn.

As mentioned in an official press statement, Coursera has picked up a majority of the capital for this fundraising round from its existing backers– GSV Asset Management, New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers (KPCB) and Learn Capital. The only new investor to back the education company’s ambitious efforts is Lampert Foundation.

Prior to this Series D fundraising round, the company had raised $49.5 million Series C funding from the aforementioned backers in late 2015. It has been growing the capabilities of its platform using the same and has only snagged fresh funds after almost a couple years, making it the company’s biggest single fund-raise until date. Today’s round takes the total capital infusion into Coursera to a whopping total of $210.3 million until date.

Michael Moe, Founder and CEO of GSV Asset Management comments on the fundraising round as under:

We are excited to see Coursera emerge as the world’s learning platform, with a highly engaged global learner base and educational content from leading universities and top companies.

 

The widely-preferred e-learning platform, which was founded by Daphne Koller and Andrew Yanta NG back in 2012, plans to utilize the funds infused into the company to expedite the growth of its fledgling enterprise business (Coursera for Business), to expand its master’s degree portfolio, and to accelerate product innovations for the better delivery of online courses to its nearly 26 million user base of students, professionals and teachers.

The Mountain View-based company is one of the most popular MOOC providers and has even signed exclusive partnerships with the likes of Google and others. The funds will focus prominently on expanding the Coursera for Business platform, which was just recently launched to help companies manage workforce transformation at scale. It has already signed up around fifty bigwigs such as BCG, BNY Mellon, L’Oreal, Paypal, and Air France KLM.  It is also looking to expand the similar initiative it had launched for Governments & Nonprofits.

Commenting on the fundraising round, Coursera’s CEO Rick Levin in a statement said:

As the industry leader in online higher education, we have a massive opportunity ahead of us in preparing people, companies, and governments to respond to the changing nature of jobs and to take on the urgent challenges of workforce transformation.

This round of funding enables us to continue innovating across our platform to deliver better learner outcomes and to accelerate the momentum we have in our new initiatives — enterprise and degrees.

In addition, Coursera, which boasts of over 2,000 courses and 180 Specializations, started offering fully-accredited online master’s degrees to meet the needs of its user base. It had kicked off the program with two degrees and has now added two more– a Master’s in Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OMIE) from HEC Paris and Master’s degree of Accounting (iMSA) from the University of Illinois. This gives students who’re unable to attend school or have skipped the said phase already to learn and excel in the field of their choice.

In the end, the Coursera team takes to its blog to extend their gratitude to its partners and massive user base. The team mentions:

We wouldn’t be where we are today without our 150+ exceptional university partners and dozens of innovative business and government collaborators. Most of all, we are grateful to the 26+ million talented, motivated people worldwide who have come to our platform to learn everything from negotiation to modern history, to machine learning.

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