Minerva Project Closes $57 Million in Series C Funding
Two New Board Members: Teach for All CEO Wendy Kopp and Bytedance CEO Zhang Yiming
SAN FRANCISCO, July 11, 2019-- Minerva Project, a leading educational innovator and global provider of top-tier educational offerings, today announced the close of its Series C round, raising US $57 million in new financing, bringing Minerva's total capital raised to date in excess of US $128 million. The round was led by Bytedance, one of the fastest growing technology companies, with participation from existing global investors TAL Education Group (NYSE: TAL), a leading K-12 after school tutoring education services provider, and Yongjin Group, a holding company and private equity investor in various industries. Additional investors in the round include Pinpoint Ventures, Kakao Ventures, Tan Tan Ventures, Lighthouse Combined from Korea as well as a select number of other new and existing investors. Minerva will use the capital to accelerate access to its unparalleled learning experiences through partnerships with universities and corporations.
Along with the announcement of the Series C funding, Minerva welcomes two new Board Members. Zhang Yiming, Founder and CEO of Bytedance, joins the Minerva board and brings insight around technology and education. Wendy Kopp, Founder and CEO of Teach for All and Founder of Teach For America, joins as a board member bringing her decades of experience running a global network of independent nonprofit organizations working to expand educational opportunities in countries around the world.
"Minerva's model for higher education is attracting interest from leading institutions and organizations who want to use the Intellectual property we have developed including our curriculum, pedagogy, technology platform, and faculty training," said Ben Nelson, founder, Chairman and CEO of Minerva Project. "Our Series C funding will allow us to see improved educational outcomes for students beyond those at Minerva Schools, as we fuel the growth of these partnerships to fulfill Minerva's mission of nurturing critical wisdom for the sake of the world."
"We are excited and impressed by Minerva's innovative approach to educating the next generation of talent," said Zhang Yiming, CEO at ByteDance.
Founded in 2012, the Minerva Project has built an educational system that includes a scaffolded curriculum that equips students with the cognitive tools and core competencies critical to success across disciplines and proven pedagogical practices, enhanced by a proprietary active learning technology. Minerva's methodology is based on depth of research on the science of learning. Minerva's Forum has been built specifically to facilitate interaction via live video, enabling professors to conduct highly intensive and engaged classroom experiences for students and use tools to provide timely and relevant feedback, ensuring progress against student learning outcomes.
"I'm honored to be joining the Board of Minerva, which has so much promise to be a powerful partner to institutions of higher education in fostering innovation and increasing effectiveness," shared Wendy Kopp, CEO & Co-foundation of Teach For All and Founder of Teach For America.
More details about Minerva's approach are described in "Building the Intentional University: Minerva and the Future of Higher Education," a book published in Fall 2017 by MIT Press.
About Minerva Project
Minerva Project is a leading educational innovator, providing top-tier higher education offerings to the Minerva Schools at KGI and other educational partners. Minerva draws on the best traditions of a research-based university education while leveraging cutting-edge technologies and harvesting decades of research on student learning and success. Minerva is committed to providing an unparalleled educational experience for preparing global leaders for the 21st century. Minerva was founded by CEO Ben Nelson in 2012, received an initial investment from Benchmark Capital the same year, and a Series B investment from educational, technology and innovation investors including TAL (NYSE: TAL), Benchmark Capital, Yongjin Group, Learn Capital, and ZhenFund in 2014. www.minervaproject.com
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