Lead investor Chris Besse joins company in an executive role
ONTARIO, Canada (September 16th, 2020) – Edsby®, the most comprehensive unified digital learning and data platform for K-12 education, has completed a Series A financing round to propel its continued growth worldwide. The investment was led by education technology executive Chris Besse with participation from existing investors.
In conjunction with the investment, investor Chris Besse, former CEO of FreshGrade and EdgeMakers and Managing Director, K-12, Nelson Education, has joined Edsby as a member of the Board and Chief Commercial Officer.
All seed investors also participated in the round. They include MindAngler Capital, headed by Nigel Stokes, co-founder and former Chairman and CEO of DataMirror Corp.; XDL Capital Group, led by Dennis Bennie, former Chairman and CEO of Delrina Corporation.
Edsby is used by millions of students, parents, teachers and school districts worldwide. It combines learning management system (LMS) features with advanced assessment, reporting and parent communication—all tailored specifically to the needs of districts, regions and countries. Edsby has seen wide adoption by school districts across North America and elsewhere in the world, including a country-wide rollout in New Zealand.
“The more I looked at Edsby, the more I realized the company’s vast market potential,” said Chris Besse. “The Edsby platform’s unique and comprehensive breadth of features provides K-12 education with the best cloud-based, enterprise solution for managing learning.”
“The four co-founders of Edsby are delighted to welcome such a successful industry veteran who shares our vision of how modern technology can enhance student learning and achievement,” said CEO John Myers. “Edsby stands to benefit tremendously from Chris’ deep experience in the K-12 education sector.”
Edsby announced a seed round in 2014.
Edsby is an award-winning SaaS-based digital learning and data platform that engages students, parents and teachers on all of their devices. It gives school districts, states and provinces or national governments powerful new ways to facilitate their digital transformations. The Edsby team has been building scalable, reliable software systems for education organizations around the world for 30 years using latest technology and standards. More information at https://edsby.com/.
Q&A With New Edsby CCO Chris Besse
Why Edsby? And why now?
Having worked in and led edtech companies for over 30 years, I’m close to the needs of K-12 school districts. And I was astounded to discover just how superior a service Edsby was when I got under the hood. Edsby does more, and does it better, with a set of services unmatched by other solutions.
I started down the path with Edsby as an investor, but the more I learned, the more value I realized I could bring. And the more compelled I felt to be part of the company’s success, beyond just investing.
How does Edsby distinguish itself from other companies in this space?
Edsby was specifically designed for the unique needs of K-12 education and casts a wider net of functionality for students, teachers, administrators and parents. It’s truly intended to be the single application a district or region would need for everything from hybrid blended/distance learning to parent communication to official district report cards. Edsby also has remarkable propositions for district, regional or country-wide learning analytics… a way to help educators and policymakers make data-driven decisions to improve learning outcomes.
Competition for digital learning systems in education is heated. What makes you confident in Edsby’s prospects?
I’ve spoken to large school district customers that have adopted Edsby as their official platform for every teacher, student and parent. And customers rave about it.
Because Edsby has been focused on the singular needs of K-12, it’s been able to “go deep” in the 10 years the company has been developing the product. Edsby has done a masterful job developing features critical to K-12 educator, student and parent stakeholders.
Yes, there has been wide adoption of free solutions like Google Classroom and other edtech point solutions. But districts and regions, particularly in these challenging times of online learning, have been hitting the limits of what lightweight systems can do.
What areas will you focus on at Edsby?
Edsby has a remarkable product. The core system is a modern, born-in-the-cloud architecture also built for the advent of big data, mobile and social media. It’s proven itself to be the right technology for the market.
The company has had good traction in its native Canada and select regions worldwide. It’s also been architected from day one to be customizable for the wide range of local terminologies, assessment and reporting schemes in K-12 and languages worldwide. It’s now time to scale sales and marketing and welcome even more customers around the planet into the fold.