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The Seed Project

The Seed Project Invests in Campus

The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed a clear and urgent need for greater development and adoption of education technology. The global crisis has now disrupted the education of over one billion students worldwide and educators are scrambling to adapt to the new reality. While teachers and faculties have acted quickly to make use of the best tools available, any parent or student will agree that the current solutions are far from perfect. It’s also important to note that experts believe the rapid adoption of digital education tools is best defined as an acceleration of an existing trend, and not a temporary reaction to the current crisis. Jacqueline Daniell, CEO of Wey Education, estimates that the pandemic accelerated EdTech adoption by roughly five years and it is unlikely that education system would or could revert to the pre-Covid norm.  Similarly, David Leferve, director of the EdTech Lab at Imperial College Business School, notes that “Working practice has already changed and many temporary solutions will become permanent. A growth in digital education is inevitable.”

The bourgeoning opportunity in EdTech is also illustrated by recent industry growth projections. Pitchbook data suggests that the already sizable $163 billion industry will more than double to $404 billion by 2025 (16.3% CAGR). There are numerous secular trends driving growth in the space, but some key developments include students and educators growing accustomed to the benefits of EdTech Tools during the pandemic, a swelling demand for personalized instruction, demand for more direct-to-parent business models, and the need for new education strategies that appeal to the younger, tech-savvy generation. The data also show an uptick in investment activity. A recent CrunchBase article, reported that 2020 Global EdTech investment reached $4.1 billion through July putting it on pace to reach the highest level in at least five years. This is especially significant considering the Covid related slowdown in 1Q 2020.  

Despite the clear need for better EdTech tools, and a growing interest in the space from both entrepreneurs and investors, widespread adoption still faces hurdles. EdTech has long been viewed as a difficult and sluggish industry due the pervasiveness of red tape, slow sales cycles, and a fragmented customer base. This stereotype persists today, but there are several encouraging signs that the necessity for progress is helping many in the industry overcome these hurdles.

Ucroo’s Campus platform is one such cause for optimism. Their technology helps campuses digitize by replacing outdated university portals and intranet platforms with modern, unifying hubs (web and mobile based). Not only does the company provide a better digital experience for educators and students, it also helps facilitate the transition away from the fragmented and outdated EdTech incumbents. Their advanced system of APIs connects all of the most frequently used education applications (ie. Blackboard, Zoom, Google Drive, Microsoft Office, etc) into one intuitive user interface. Their approach has led to extremely impressive sales cycles and implementation timelines, which is one of the many reasons they’ve been able to scale from just one university client in 2018 to forty in 2020. The Seed Project is very excited to participate in Ucroo’s latest funding round and we look forward to supporting the Campus team in their continued success.

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