December Edition of the X Report
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In this month's X Report, we showcase the Best-in-Class in European EdTech Innovations and share news on a pioneering new methodology to evaluate ESG credentials in the EdTech space. Each month, we will share a snapshot of key trends, showcase the stars of today and tomorrow, provide some food for thought as well as mergers, acquisitions and fundraising.

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Best-in-Class - Showcasing the Best European Innovations in 2021
Svenia Busson, European Edtech Alliance

Over the years, there has been a steady rise of EdTech companies in Europe as well as an uptick in Venture Capital investment. We’ve seen a 10X growth in EdTech VC investment in Europe since 2014 reaching a record of 237 deals totalling 711M$ in 2020.

European EdTech Funding 

© Brighteye Ventures, European Edtech Funding Report 2021

According to data retrieved from HolonIQ, in 2021, more than half of the Europe EdTech 100 operate in the Workforce sector. Highlighted below are some examples that showcase Europe’s best-in-class in the sector.

360 Learning - Reinventing Corporate Training

Working under the assumption that standardized top-down corporate training doesn’t work, 360 Learning aims to lower the production costs of training content by enabling and empowering the employees themselves to create trainings based on their company’s needs, developing a more collaborative style of training based on peer-to-peer learning.

Founded in 2012 in Paris, they have now raised $200 million in a funding round and currently have more than 1,500 companies using their services.

Multiverse - Making Apprenticeships Accessible

In the UK, Multiverse offers career-focused apprenticeships in digital leadership and business and makes top jobs in law, media, tech, and finance accessible for those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. The Multiverse platform goes beyond academic achievements and instead uses applied learning programmes and matching software to help its 16–24-year-old candidates secure jobs at large tech and consulting corporations such as Google and KPMG.

Named top start-up in the UK in 2021, Multiverse reports that its revenues increase nearly four times each year and since its inception has trained over 5,000 apprentices.

CanopyLab – Adaptive and Social Learning in the Corporate Space

The culture of education and learning in Scandinavia has always been forward thinking. By embracing a personalized education and work model focussed on well-being, Nordic educational institutions consistently rank higher than their European counterparts. Thus, it is no surprise that the region’s EdTech field is showing signs of success, coupling Nordic principles of learning with cutting edge technology.

CanopyLab, based in Denmark has reinforced the idea of adaptive learning with their platform, ‘The Future of Learning Delivered Today’ which allows people to identify skills and competency gaps. They currently service 200+ companies and educational institutions with remote and blended learning solutions in more than 20 countries.

Turing College & Iconoclass - The rise of the bootcamp model for upskilling

Upskilling the workforce is crucial for both companies and employees to safeguard their competitiveness in an environment that is marked by disruptive technological developments. European EdTech startups are seizing this opportunity by offering skills-development programmes through a new kind of model that has emerged in Europe with a force: Bootcamps. Highly industry-oriented, they are 3-to-6-month programs that provide the practical foundations for jobs in a variety of sectors.

Turing College based in Vilnius, Lithuania is a good example of a data science bootcamp in touch with industry leaders. Founded in 2020, they not only partner with tech companies such as Tesla and Microsoft but co-create the curriculum with them.

But bootcamps are not exclusive to tech. Iconoclass, developed a sales and business development bootcamp based in Paris which provides a 4-month course with 60% of the training in a practical format. The bootcamp has an Income Sharing Agreement with its students so that they don’t have to pay upfront, only if they find a job. A win-win model.

Svenia Busson is co-founder of LearnSpace, Edtech Tours and the European Edtech Alliance, VP of Edtech France and author of 'Exploring the Future of Education'.


Dec 21 - Quote2
global all stars headerv5

EdtechX Holdings Acquisition Corp. II and IBIS Capital launch new ESG and Impact evaluation methodology for the EdTech industry.

EdtechX Holdings Acquisition Corp. II (NASDAQ: EDTXU), the second EdTech-focused special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) set up by EdtechX Holdings, have launched a pioneering methodology to evaluate the ESG (environmental, social and governance) credentials of potential target businesses in the EdTech space.

Developed in partnership IBIS Capital, London based specialist education technology investment bank, the proprietary methodology is one the first of its kind in the EdTech sector, and examines seven ESG and Impact specific categories material to the EdTech sector including:

1.    Reach & Affordability
2.    Quality of Education / Training & Gainful of Skills & Employment
3.    Efficacy & Sustainability
4.    Customer Privacy & Data Security
5.    Responsible Selling and Marketing Practices
6.    Employee Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion
7.    Business Ethics & Competitive Behaviour

The pioneering methodology aims to attract and assist impact investors by helping them to accurately assess the efficacy of ESG and impact initiatives using measurable key performance indicators within each of the seven EdTech-specific categories, such as the number of students enrolled (including those enrolled from underserved geographies and low-income households), course completion rates and job-placement rates, and will highlight the strengths, weaknesses, and risks of potential investments in the sector.

The comprehensive methodology is also intended to help Edtech Companies to perform a base line assessment of their ESG policies and impact strategies.

EdtechX Holdings Acquisition Corp. II will be the first SPAC to evaluate potential investments in this way, and endorses the ‘SPACs for Good’ campaign launched last year by co-founders Benjamin Vedrenne-Cloquet and Charles McIntyre, with a pledge to grant 4% of their SPAC founders shares to not-for-profit initiatives which support the digitalisation of education. The campaign also encourages other SPAC founders and sponsor teams to pledge a minimum of 1% of their founders shares as a grant for the same causes.

Faced with the rapid shift to a more remote or hybrid learning model, coupled with the advancements in the field of education technology accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic, the co-founders hope to establish the ‘SPACs for Good’ campaign as a market standard, and expect the new evaluation methodology “to support a shift towards ESG excellence in the sector”, urging EdTech companies to “embrace the relevant ESG factors required to ensure the success of the model in broadening accessibility of digital education”.

Find out more here >>


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Market Roundup Logos1-1
Education market round up
World Bank analysis-1
The Hechinger Report - edtech
Forbes - remote teaching
Work market round up
World Economic Forum - AI
EdSurge - Microlearning
Education Technology - Digital workspace
investment market round up
EdSurge - AI moonshots-1
EU-Startups - Busuu
Washington Post - edX&2U
Dec 21 - Quote1
M&A Highlights
M&A Activity >
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(1) Source: S&P Capital IQ


Significant Fundraising Activity >
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Valuation Benchmarks

Industry Analysis – Europe’s Education Market

Dec 21 Graph 1

Key Points

Global EdTech funding reached $14.9 billion in the first three quarters of 2021, with the European EdTech sector contributing $2.3 billion of this amount. Europe has shown the fastest growth in EdTech investment in 2021 YTD, with investment in the sector close to 3x the levels seen in the same time period a year prior. Post pandemic, two verticals that have attracted larger amounts of funding within the European EdTech space have been workforce training and K12 education. The average deal size in the European EdTech sector is increasing after a period of relatively consistent levels. Deals in the $0-1M range have accounted for 31% of all deals. Furthermore, deals in the $1-5M range have accounted for 32.5% of all deals. Relative consistency in deal count across the $10M+ ranges shows some positive signs of maturity in the market, with 21% of 2021 deals being larger than $10M.

Dec 21 Graph 2

The European EdTech ecosystem has seen major investments at Series A, B and C. Series C rounds comprised ~20% of total European EdTech funding in 2020, a dramatic increase from just 9% of total funding in 2019. This reflects the maturing EdTech landscape that is shaping up in Europe. Kahoot! is an example of a European EdTech company that has benefited from increased investor interest - the Norwegian game-based learning platform has raised a total of $363.9 million over nine rounds and stands out as a European EdTech success story1. Another major deal within the European EdTech sector was Vienna-based GoStudent’s €205 million series C raise in June 20211. This resulted in GoStudent achieving unicorn status at a €1.4 billion valuation, securing its position as the highest valued K12 EdTech company in Europe.

Dec 21 Graph 3

The United Kingdom leads the pack in terms of European EdTech activity in 2021, with 36% of deals taking place within the region. Having the largest connected primary and secondary education market in Europe, as well as transferability to the US, Europe and Commonwealth, the UK is perfectly positioned to be a leader within the continent. The UK EdTech market has had a surge of demand triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic resulting in the sector growing 72% in 2020. Furthermore, the UK is ranked number one in terms of EdTech venture capital and angel funding in Europe. Multiverse, a UK-based startup that connects apprentices with companies, secured $44 million in new funding in 2021. This is the UK’s biggest ever EdTech raise. France follows closely behind accounting for 21% of deals within the European EdTech space. A notable player within the French EdTech realm is OpenClassrooms. The online education platform completed a series C funding round of $80 million led by Lumos Capital Group in 2021.

Dec 21 Graph 4

The growth of Europe’s EdTech market shines a spotlight on the promising prospects of Europe's education sector. Increasing investor interest combined with larger funding rounds will allow for European EdTech startups to have a global impact.

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