Elevar Equity, Omidyar Network, and The Rise Fund announced an undisclosed Series A investment in Grupo VI-DA, an Argentinean digital literacy and education company.
(Press Release) Grupo VI-DA, one of Latin America’s leading innovators in digital reading with a focus on quality education transformation, announced today that it has raised funding from Elevar Equity, Omidyar Network and The Rise Fund through its early stage co-investment partnership with Elevar.
Grupo VI-DA seeks to close Latin America’s literacy and digital literacy gap by providing a suite of digital products to students, schools, and consumers that democratize access to high quality, Spanish-language fiction, nonfiction, technical, and academic content. With licenses with over 600 publishers that grants access to over 600K titles, Grupo VI-DA has built a powerful technology-based platform that houses one of the largest and most diverse collections of Spanish-language digital content.
While 90% of Latin America is covered by mobile broadband, only half of that population is connected and online, and the other half are restricted by a lack of locally-relevant content, digital skills, and a limited ability to pay. Furthermore, according to the 2015 PISA results, 46% of 15-year-olds in Latin America do not meet minimum standards of literacy and text comprehension. Grupo VI-DA is addressing both of these issues.
“There is a compelling opportunity to address Latin America’s literacy gap and increase reading comprehension and analytic capabilities via solutions that leverage technology, digital assets, improved pedagogic tools and access to high quality, locally relevant content,” said Johanna Posada, Co-Founder at Elevar Equity. “Grupo VI-DA is in a unique position to address this opportunity given its leadership and team, vision, access to content, technology and focus on outcomes. We are excited to be part of their journey.”
“We believe Grupo VI-DA can support people across Latin America in improving their digital and literacy skills and are thrilled to be able to help them further scale,” said Eliza Erikson, investment partner at Omidyar Network. “By partnering with publishers, Grupo VI-DA is bringing critical Spanish-language digital content into schools at a fraction of the cost of new content or physical books. We are particularly excited about Grupo VI-DA’s future plans to integrate their content with assessment tools that can help teachers access high quality instructional resources, assess current literacy levels, and personalize interventions to individual learner needs.”
The current round of funding will be used to scale Grupo VI-DA’s digital reading products including BIDI, the digital library platform currently sold to companies, universities and governments, and Leamos, an eBook subscription service. In addition, funding will support the launch of “TICMAS,” a new educational platform that will support teachers and students in encouraging digital inclusion, soft skills development, and project-based learning.
“We are honored to partner with some of the leading global and regional investors to expand our products and launch ‘TICMAS,’” said Viviana Zocco, CEO and founder of Grupo VI-DA.
“I am convinced that the most direct path towards a better quality of life is education. By focusing on improving student learning outcomes, we can begin to address some of the biggest and most persistent unmet needs in education. Reading comprehension is the foundation to develop students’ critical thinking, communication, and creativity. Technology can be a valuable educational tool to support teachers and students.”
Viviana Zocco has over two decades of entrepreneurial, strategic and operational experience with start-ups and global corporate entities. Zocco’s first company, Risk Analysis was sold to Standard & Poor’s and became a case study for Babson College, published by Harvard Business Review. She also founded TKM, the leading Spanish Millennial entertainment platform, and a Spanish E-Book Ecosystem.