Two UW engineering alumni who co-founded an online education company secured $159 million back in January to help accelerate the company’s growth.
Prodigy Education is an EdTech company launched by Rohan Mahimker and Alex Peters, both of whom graduated from the mechatronic engineering program in 2011. The Oakville-based company aims to deliver math education for students in Grades 1 through 8 in an attempt to increase engagement through video games.
“Since our beginning as an undergraduate project nine years ago, we have always operated with a simple yet compelling mission: to help every student in the world love learning. It will continue to be our guiding light as we transform into a truly global leader in education,” Mahimker said.
The company was started after their graduation in May 2011. Since its launch, it has grown from 3,000 local users to over 100 million registered users worldwide, making it one of the fastest-growing EdTech companies in North America.
EdTech (Educational Technology) refers to hardware and software designed to enhance classroom learning and improve students’ outcomes.
They have matured in North America and have recently expanded to the U.K., India, and Australia.
The investment was led by U.S. private equity company TPG Growth, which also has current investments in other disruptive tech companies such as Airbnb, Spotify and Uber. Their $159 million investment is one of the largest investments in North American EdTech history.
“Prodigy’s impressive growth is underpinned by a truly differentiated, game-based, and adaptive platform that is well-aligned with the core curriculum for Grades 1 through 8,” David Trujillo, a partner at TPG said, “we believe that Prodigy’s unique value proposition for teachers, parents, and students — through advanced technology that fosters a love of learning — positions the company to connect with users across the world.”
As part of the investment, Trujillo and TPG growth principal Jacqui Hawwa will join Prodigy’s Board of Directors.
The investment represents a new era for Prodigy, with meaningful capital to accelerate its market reach, push for advancements in its video games, and further strengthen its math education. Prodigy plans to hire 400 employees this year.
“We have come a long way as a company, and it’s a true testament to the strength and dedication of our team,” Peters said, “together, we will continue to deliver the best products and experiences as possible to hundreds of millions of users across the world who love learning because of Prodigy.”