Online education platform to address demand for tech education
Amsterdam, 11 January 2022
Winc Academy announced a $3 million funding round led by Rubio Impact Ventures and Dutch Founders Fund to increase the steep growth of its education platform and meet the surging demand for online upskilling and reskilling courses. Within a year, the Amsterdam-based scale up 8-folded its active student base, driven by the digitization of work and accelerated by Covid.
The funding enables Winc Academy to educate 20,000 learners within a few years, to gain skills that enable a career in tech. The self-paced courses with personal mentoring are designed to be combined with work or private life, and prepare learners for a career as developer, data analyst, and other in-demand tech jobs. This significantly grows the talent pool and enables employers to attract the professionals they need.
“Winc Academy aims to achieve lifelong learning & a secure job for all. They essentially offer careers, not courses, and enable everyone who has the ambition and grit an opportunity at a future-proof career in tech. Impact drive is strongly anchored in their DNA”, says Willemijn Verloop, founder of Rubio Impact Ventures.
“In just 3 years this team has built a scalable edtech platform with graduation rates far higher than others. By bringing together industry experts, mentors, and learners, Winc Academy is building a much-needed international marketplace in education” adds Patrick Kerssemakers from Dutch Founders Fund.
The news follows the appointment of Joran van Aart as CEO in May 2021, who then joined the founding team consisting of Marijn Pijnenborg and Carla Snepvangers. Winc Academy will further expand the leadership team with a COO and are also recruiting for senior roles in education, marketing, financial strategy, and tech.
Vivid Ventures, an early stage fund that led Winc Academy’s angel round in 2019, also participates in the current seed round.
“We are thrilled to bring Rubio and Dutch Founders Fund on board, and to have the continued support of our angel investors. They bring a mix of expertise in digital products, international marketplaces, and social entrepreneurship. A strong combination that will help us achieve our purpose of giving everyone the chance at a better future by learning in-demand skills” concluded Joran van Aart, CEO of Winc Academy.
About Winc Academy
Winc Academy is an Amsterdam-based online education platform founded in 2018, in response to the skills gap and digitization of work. Learners follow the online courses at their own pace from the comfort of their own home and are engaged through an active community and personal mentoring. Average student age is 35 years. Course duration ranges from several weeks to 6 months full time, with an average tuition fee of €2,500. The scale up is accredited by the Dutch NRTO and CRKBO and prides itself in its accessibility to a large audience: while courses are at academic skill level, a previous degree is not required.
Winc Academy now employs 35 people and its founding team consists of Marijn Pijnenborg (founder of Funda and auto.nl), Carla Snepvangers (Endemol, SAIL Amsterdam), and Joran van Aart (Studyportals).
About Rubio Impact Ventures
Rubio Impact Ventures is a leading impact venture capital fund with 150 million euro in assets under management. Rubio invests in young, fast-growing companies that make a substantial global impact and realise this in a commercially scalable way; a future-proof form of entrepreneurship that Rubio calls ‘the new normal’. Rubio offers entrepreneurs the capital to grow and at the same time the expertise, network and support they seek to realise their plans and accelerate results.
About Dutch Founders Fund
Dutch Founders Fund is an early-stage venture capital fund from Amsterdam, started by a group of successful Dutch entrepreneurs: Laurens Groenendijk (Just Eat, Treatwell, Miinto, Hiber), Patrick Kerssemakers (fonQ), Bas Beerens (WeTransfer), Hidde Hoogcarspel (Spacebuzz) and Remco van Zanten (ex Booking, Zalando, BCG). The fund specialises in marketplaces and companies with strong network effects. Since its launch in 2018, the fund has successfully invested in 16 companies. This includes: YourCampus, Shypple, Vintage Cash Cow, Lumaly, Blanco, Nostics, Reveall, Veylinx, Wonderkind, Voicebooking, Fleks, Minimum, Caya, Tracedock (exited to CM.com), Winc Academy, and Buildstream. The total fund has almost €100 million assets under management.