Acumen invests in two educational startups in India

Social venture capital investor Acumen has invested an undisclosed amount in two educational startups in India—Ignis Careers and Standard of Excellence in Education and Development (SEED), according to a press release.

“Parents are increasingly demanding better education for their children and are anxious to see tangible improvements in learning outcomes. Both Ignis and SEED bring a unique combination of high-quality content, trained educators and management experience to bring about improvements in their schools and throughout India," said Siddharth Tata, associate director, Acumen.

Incorporated last year, Ignis Career provides English language training for teachers and students. The company claims it has reached more than 28,000 students and 1,000 teachers to date.

Founded in 2013, New Delhi-based SEED develops and provides curriculum, training and management services to low-cost private schools in India. It has partnered with three schools since 2012.

“We are looking forward to working with Acumen on strengthening our curriculum and the processes needed to scale our operations, so SEED can expand to include more schools and deepen its impact throughout India,” said Manish Kumar, co-founder and CEO, SEED.

Acumen focuses its investments on companies that provide products or services to the bottom-of- the-pyramid (BoP) income groups. The firm, founded in 2001, invests in India, Pakistan, East Africa, West Africa and Latin America. In India, Acumen invests in agriculture, education, energy, water sanitation, housing and healthcare.

This is the first investment in the education sector in India by Acumen after it invested in Bangalore-based LabourNet Services India Pvt Ltd, a company which provides work-integrated job training in the informal sector, in December 2013. Earlier, it invested in pre-school chain Hippocampus Learning Centres and vocational training company Edubridge Learning.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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