London-based Lingumi, an English learning platform for preschoolers, has raised £4 million in a funding round led by China-based technology fund North Summit Capital and other investors including LocalGlobe, ADV and Entrepreneur First. North Summit Capital fund is run by Alibaba’s former Chief Data Scientist Dr Min Wanli.
Lingumi was launched in 2017. It teaches critical language skills to learners from the age of two to six. It offers one-on-one interactive English lessons. Its first course teaches English Grammar and Vocabulary to kids.
The platform is offering free activity packs and videos to parents and learners during the COVID-19 crisis. The edtech platform has also pledged to donate 20% of its revenue during this time to Global Children’s Fund.
Lingumi lessons are delivered through its mobile app called Club Lingumi app, which is available on iOS and Android. The platform opens one lesson each day to limit screen time and improve children’s English comprehension, speech and accent. Through its lessons, children’s knowledge is gradually built for nouns, verbs, questions and phrases. Lingumi uses interactive speaking tasks, educational games and teacher videos to teach English in a natural and interactive manner.
This app helps both English and non-English speaking parents and you don’t need to know English to use the parent app that is available in English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Chinese (simple and traditional).
The company launched its first course in China last year. It has seen 1.5 million lesson plays in China in the last six months, as per a report in TechCrunch. As per Lingumi, its user base in China increased by 50% during the lockdown. Lingumi says, “Lingumi’s rapid expansion in the Chinese market required a strategic local investor, and Dr Min and the team had a clear-sighted understanding of the technology and scale opportunity both in China, and globally.”
Commenting on the investment, Dr Wanli Min, general partner at North Summit Capital, said, “It is only the most privileged children who can access native English speakers for one-on-one tutoring… Lingumi has the potential to democratize English learning and offer every kid a personalized curriculum empowered by AI & Lingumi’s ‘asynchronous teaching; model.”
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