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Wednesday 13 June 2018

Kano announces investment from Sesame Ventures

Kano logoLondon-based educational computing company Kano has secured additional funding from Sesame Ventures. The size of the investment was not disclosed, but it forms an extension to Kano’s series B round in November last year.

Kano creates kits that allow users to build their own computers. The system is powered by Raspberry Pi 3 and Kano OS (see Kano pulls $15m plum from Raspberry Pi), and is designed to help people understand how a computer works and then use the device to learn to code in simple steps. It shipped its first kit in 2014 and now claims to have 250k users in 150 different countries. The kits have proved popular in the education sector, where it is used by more than 3,000 schools and educational programmes worldwide. The company also provides an online platform that allows users to learn to code and provides access to step-by-step coding projects.

Sesame Ventures is the investment arm of Sesame Workshop, the company behind Sesame Street. It looks to partner with companies innovating in education, health, and social welfare for children. As part of the investment Kano will gain access to Sesame Workshop’s expertise in early childhood development and associated research.

The Series B round in September 2017, which was led by Thames Trust and Breyer Capital, raised $28m, allowing Kano to introduce a new line of computing kits and roll them out through c.4,500 retail stores across North America and Canada, partnering with Amazon, Best Buy, Microsoft, Target and Walmart.

The DIY computer market is a competitive one, with Arduino, pi-top and more also operating in this space. The new deal with Sesame Ventures will provide Kano with opportunities to create new products and content, and benefit from the strong brand awareness of Sesame Workshop, particularly in North America.  

Posted by Dale Peters at '08:30' - Tagged: education   funding   startup   coding   computing  

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