SoftBank Pours $215 Million Investment in Gamified E-Learning Ed-Tech Platform Kahoot

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 3 min read
SoftBank Pours $215 Million Investment in Gamified E-Learning Ed-Tech Platform Kahoot
Photo: Depositphotos

SoftBank acquired nearly 10% in the Norweigen ed-tech startup Kahoot that offers a gamified e-learning experience to users. The platform has seen massive growth in 2020 and plans to go public by the next year.

With the coronavirus pandemic shutting schools and colleges across the world e-learning ed-tech platforms have gained huge momentum. On Tuesday, October 13, SoftBank made a $215 fresh investment in Oslo-based education startup Kahoot.

Reportedly, SoftBank acquired a 9.7% stake in the company by buying 43 million news shares at $5 per share. Kahoot said that it will deploy these funds in upgrading the virtual learning experience on its platform. Besides, the funds from Softbank will also help Kahoot to fuel growth via joint ventures, acquisitions, and partnerships. In its official statement, the startup also stated:

“Kahoot! is experiencing strong momentum and accelerated adoption as enterprises increasingly seek engaging, trustworthy and user-friendly ways to build corporate culture, educate and interact”.

Founded in 2012, Kahoot is a gamified e-learning platform that allows players to create and participate in multiple-choice quizzes. Over the last 12 months, Kahoot has clocked over 1.3 billion “participating players” worldwide.

One part of Kahoot’s business focuses on home learnings and schools while the other part focuses on corporate clients for training sessions and presentations. Speaking to CNBC, Kahoot CEO Eilert Hanoa said:

“It’s all about the general switch in mindset from digital tools being a nice-to-have additional set of features in schools and classrooms, to being maybe the most important toolkit they can use to create engagement”.

Ed-Tech Startups Gaining Huge Traction

EdTech or Educational Technology has been growing over the last few years as demand for virtual e-learning platforms rises. The Coronavirus pandemic further fueled the growth with schools and colleges turning online. Thus, the industry is also getting huge attention from big players in the market.

Kahoot has been on a roll this year. This is the second-big fundraise in months after securing $28 million earlier in June 2020. Since the beginning of 2020, Kahoot’s share price has also appreciated by a whopping 150%. The CEO said that the company is planning for a full public listing on the Norwegian stock market in 2021. He told CNBC:

“We’ve already accumulated approximately 8,000 new shareholders. We believe that, by doing a re-IPO on the main list on the Oslo Stock Exchange, we could extend the investor base even further.”

Well, this investment can also be a good hedge for SoftBank after its failed investments in Uber and WeWork. The coronavirus pandemic made things worst for the two unicorn startups. On the other hand, SoftBank has also been on the move for consolidating its investment portfolio in the market. Last month, SoftBank sold its stake in British semi-conductor giant Arm Holdings, to Nvidia in a deal worth $40 billion.

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