Nordic EdTech News #61: 2022-03-07
Your Weeks 8 & 9 update from the Nordic and Baltic EdTech ecosystem
Hello, good morning and welcome to today’s Nordic EdTech News.
Inevitably the Russian invasion of Ukraine is dominating everyone’s thoughts at the moment and the impact of the conflict on education has already been significant - 211 schools have been destroyed and thousands of children have fled their homes.
In response to the crisis many EdTech businesses from our ecosystem (sorry but too many to include everyone here) are offering their products and services free of charge to Ukrainian students and teachers. EdTechs in Estonia have already pulled together a collective response (Link) and Estonian educators are also working to keep lines of communication open with colleagues in Ukraine (Link). Members of our EdTech community are also supporting the World With Ukraine hackathon - get involved here - as well as leading campaigns to generate donations.
There are a host of other ways in which we can all support Ukraine. Beetroot Academy, the Swedish-Ukrainian IT school, has an excellent list of actions and causes to support here and Sifted have also gathered a list of initiatives here.
In EdTech, it has been an incredible few weeks for leading Swedish company Albert. This “one-stop-shop for digital and individualized homework help” has recently announced significant revenue expansion in 2021 (Link) and launched a new English language learning product across key markets (Link). Most significantly, Albert has also concluded a sizable international acquisition, buying UK-based Sumdog for £6.85m (Link). The deal provides Albert with a B2B presence in the large UK market and complements the company’s current B2C proposition. This has also been further enhanced by news that the company plans to target 10-16 year olds in the UK under the brand Albert Teen (Link).
It is important to note that Denmark’s Famly has also made its first acquisition (Link). The company confirmed that it has bought UK-based FirstSteps to expand its UK presence and adding 600+ new customers makes it the largest all-in-one nursery platform in the UK. The acquisition follows Famly’s $18 million Series A funding round that was announced in December 2021.
I should have included news of Gyldendal Denmark’s improved 2021 results in my round-up of full year figures in the last NEN. Accounts for 2021 show turnover of DKK 935 million (+4% yoy) and operating profit (EBIT) of DKK 42 million (was DKK 9 million in 2020). The performance of the education business was “strong” particularly in digital products which now accounts for 44% of revenue. (Link)
Applications are now open for the 10th Annual EdTechX All Stars Awards that celebrate the startups and scaleups shaping the global EdTech industry. The winners are chosen using a variety of indicators including revenue growth, scale, innovation, and efficacy of ESG / impact initiatives. Recent Nordic successes include DigiExam, Eduten, Kahoot!, Kognity, Lingvist and Yousician. Full details on how to apply here.
I was delighted to be featured in Dealroom’s EdTech newsletter recently. It features a monthly roundup of notable EdTech deals, must-read industry articles and the hottest topics shaping the future of learning. Subscribe here and don’t miss their dedicated EdTech ecosystem database, made in in partnership with Brighteye Ventures.
Do check out this recording of the recent webinar highlighting lessons and experiences from Nordic educators in handling the challenges of the Covid pandemic.
Finally, the next Nordic EdTech News will come out on Monday 21st March, just before the start of BETT in London. Please email me (email@example.com) with any BETT-related news stories or if you’d like to meet up during the event.
All best regards, Jonathan
News from Denmark
How online communities can empower and support Danish educators. (Link)
News from Estonia
New greenhouse simulator teaches students and farmers about climate. (Link)
News from Finland
News from Iceland
News from Latvia
Plans are underway to build a new digital STEM classroom, which will enable young people to expand their knowledge and skills in key subjects. (Link)
News from Lithuania
Nearly 300 digital resources have been collated and curated by the National Agency for Education for use in schools. (Link)
News from Norway
Registration for NKUL (Norway’s biggest conference on the use of ICT in education and learning) is now open. Details here.
Norwegian HE students need better digital skills according to the University of Bergen. (Link)
Research shows that school students are positive about the role of tablets in their learning and that they create opportunities for innovative teaching. (Link)
News from Sweden
Skolverket reports progress in digitising Swedish schools but some challenges remain (e.g analysing online sources and leveling up provision). (Link)
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