Curious-er and curiouser: Video learning startup lands $15 million

Last spring, I wrote about the launch of Curious, an effort by dot-com veteran Justin Kitch to create a video-learning clearinghouse. I noted then that online learning is a crowded space, and it’s only gotten more so since, with new entrants like Grokker. Kitch himself admits that during much of last year, “We were on a wing and a prayer, hoping the marketplace would take shape.”

Well, it looks like the effort has gained altitude: Kitch said lessons on Curious have grown tenfold to 5,000, and the number of teachers on the platform has gone from 100 to 700. “We’ve had more people watch lessons in the past six weeks,” he  told me Thursday, “than in the previous six months.”

And to keep the party rolling, Menlo Park-based Curious has announced a $15 million funding round led by GSV Capital. That’s more than twice the size of the Series A round the startup scored back in May.

Kitch said he’ll use the dough to ramp up his startup’s mobile offerings and recruit and train more teachers. GSV’s Michael Moe, for his part, calls ed-tech “ripe for disruption.” Other startups he’s backed in the space include Coursera and Chegg … not to mention consumer brands like Facebook and Twitter that became runaway hits. Moe clearly feels comfortable with his bet on Kitch (especially since they were introduced by mutual friend and Curious investor Bill Campbell).

As for that crowded field? Moe’s fine with that, too. “Is this a space that’s going to be dominated by one big player? I don’t think so,” he said. “And it doesn’t need to be.”


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