SOURCE: Venture Capital in Education Summit

Venture Capital in Education Summit

June 06, 2011 11:20 ET

Venture Capital in Education Summit 2011 Announces 10 EdTech Innovators for Education Innovators Showcase

Early-Stage Companies Given the Opportunity to Present Their Products to Strategic Investors and Influential Leaders in the Education Industry in New York City on June 14 and 15

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Jun 6, 2011) - The Venture Capital in Education Summit 2011, to be held at the IAC HQ in New York City on June 14 and 15, announced today the ten early-stage companies selected to participate in its "Education Innovators Showcase." The selected companies provide technology-enabled solutions to an array of K-20 education issues. Each of the selected companies will have the rare opportunity to present their products to Summit attendees, which include venture capitalists, angel investors, strategic investors and influential leaders in the education industry.

The ten companies were selected from nearly 100 applications and represent ideas that are best poised to make their mark in the education sector. From smart flash cards to interactive globes to tools that help provide better and quicker assessments of students, teachers and school districts, these companies stand ready to transform segments of the education landscape.

"This is an exciting time in EdTech. The opportunity for technology-based solutions in education is tremendous. The ten companies selected for the 'Education Innovators Showcase' are demonstrative of the diversity of ideas that are developing in this industry as well as how existing verticals can be stretched to new limits," said Adam Newman, co-founder and managing partner at Education Growth Advisors, a revenue strategy consultancy exclusively serving the education sector. "Each year the Venture Capital in Education Summit accelerates entrepreneurial innovation and investment in education; the Showcase is a central part of that mission."

The names of the ten Showcase participants and short descriptions of each company are below:

  • Brainscape -- a web and mobile platform that helps students study more efficiently by using an adaptive smart flashcard algorithm
  • Engrade -- by providing web-based classroom tools from online grade books to a homework calendar to parent and student portals, Engrade helps connect K-12 administrators, teachers, parents and students
  • Global Imagination -- the company's flagship product, the Magic Planet®, is a digital display with a sphere-shaped screen that uses interactive media to provide global information
  • Late Nite Labs -- an education technology company that creates engaging science content for distance and hybrid learning settings
  • LessonWriter -- a free website for teachers that creates lesson plans and instructional materials for teaching English language skills from any reading passage
  • Mingoville -- offers two online educational products that make extensive use of storytelling and oral communication to teach English and math
  • OpenSesame -- the world's marketplace for buying and selling e-learning courses
  • RippleSend -- RippleSend's product, rrripple, is a digital ePortfolio and analytics platform that creates a single place to bring all digital media together in one place
  • Skillshare -- a community marketplace for offline classes, offered by anyone on any type of skill-based topic, from baking cupcakes to raising startup capital
  • Socrative -- a smart student response system that empowers teachers to engage their classrooms with a series of educational exercises and games

Further details about the companies participating in the Education Innovators Showcase can be found at the Venture Capital in Education Summit website.

The companies were selected through an application process that was judged by representatives from the Summit's host organizations and sponsors, including: Education Growth Advisors; Startl, a not-for-profit dedicated to accelerating education technology startups; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, a leading global education company committed to addressing education's dynamic challenges; and, The Apollo Group, a leading provider of higher education programs. All selected companies are pre-Series A enterprises that have demonstrated market traction and are deploying innovative technology-enabled solutions for enhancing learning or improving the operational performance of education institutions.

"Technology-based solutions are flooding every industry, except education. It is time for those in the private sector to step up to the plate and drive development in the EdTech industry," said Phoenix Wang, co-founder and managing director, Startl, "The Summit seeks to explore the current dynamics and activities at the leading edge of the industry and offer investors the chance to meet early-stage companies in order to promote industry growth."

The theme of the 2011 Summit is "Education Taking Flight," which will explore the arc of an entrepreneurial venture, and the different experiences that education technology companies encounter as they travel from lift off to landing. The Summit will also feature a Spotlight Panel on the topic of Gaming and Game-Based Learning.

Sponsors of the Venture Capital in Education Summit 2011 include Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, The Apollo Group, Wireless Generation, Berkery Noyes, and Poken. For more information about the event, visit http://www.venturecapitalineducation.com/ or email vces-info@start.org.

About Education Growth Advisors
Education Growth Advisors is a revenue strategy consulting firm exclusively serving the education sector launched by Adam Newman and Christopher Curran. It delivers strategy and operational consulting services to companies, executives, and selected investors with an emphasis on accelerating growth, enhancing core business functions and preparing clients for capital market activities. Led by a team of education and investment industry veterans, Education Growth Advisors' clients receive access to proprietary resources and consulting services informed by nearly two decades of education sector experience. For more information, visit http://edgrowthllc.com/

About Startl
Startl is dedicated to accelerating new digital media and learning companies. Startl focuses on cultivating the conditions for success that allow entrepreneurs to create and investors to capitalize next-generation technology companies that are both learning-rich and market-smart. As an organization, Startl seeks to do for the nascent digital media and learning community what the Sundance Institute did for the independent film industry -- identify promising talent, promote disruptive start-ups, forge alternative pathways, and attract responsible capital. Startl has received initial seed funding from the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Lumina Foundation. For more information, visit http://www.startl.org.

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