By Nancy Dahlberg
Aprende Institute, a vocational training platform, raised a $1.6 million seed round. Participating investors were Angel Ventures, Artisan Venture Capital, 500 Startups and Claure Group.
Aprende Institute is based in Miami, has operations in Bogotá and Mexico City, and serves students across Spanish-speaking countries, as well as US Hispanics. Aprende CEO and founder Martin Claure says Aprende Institute has served more than 25,000 students across Latin America and the US, and is enrolling about 3,000 new students per month, according to LAVCA, which reported the news.
Aprende Institute offers a wide range of online training courses and also monitors student progress and prompts connections between teachers, tutors and learners. Aprende Institute’s education offering includes training in gastronomy (also known as Gastronómica Internacional), business and entrepreneurship, wellness, trade skills, and fashion/beauty.
The recent funding, announced in late April, will allow Aprende Institute to further develop its platform, as well as expanding into Chile , Peru, Argentina and Brazil. Aprende also is building a digital community to link its students, gig workers and freelancers to support each other and share best practices and emerging trends.
“There is a gap in vocational training, especially in Latin America. We see a great opportunity in offering a flexible, high-quality and affordable training alternative that allows people to improve, renew or increase their vocational skills and stay updated both on the job market as well as in the entrepreneurial world,” says Claure, in a statement.
“We aim for a high quality educational offering that effectively trains students in the skills demanded by the job market. According to studies led by the Interamerican Development Bank (IDB) on the future of work, the jobs with the most growth will be those that require skills that are not easily replaced by robots or algorithms, such as food preparation or wellness. Our courses prepare students to face these upcoming labor market changes.”
According to TheEdvocate, Latin America is now the fourth largest ed-tech market in the world – behind North America, Western Europe, and Asia in terms of revenue – and has grown by over 14% annually since 2013. ResearchAndMarkets.com estimates that it will generate revenues of over $3 billion by 2023. Ed-tech has also been cited by LAVCA as an area of strong potential in Latin America.
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