Kidaptive Raises $10.1M Series B


Kidaptive Raises $10.1M Series B

Acclaimed early childhood learning app scores big

By Tony Wan     Nov 14, 2013

Kidaptive Raises $10.1M Series B

This kid's growing fast.

Kidaptive, creator of the popular Leo's Pad app, has raised $10.1 million in a Series B round. Formation 8 led the way, with Menlo Ventures, Stanford-StartX Fund, and previous investors NewSchools Venture Fund and Prana Studios also participating. The Palo Alto, CA-based company has raised a total of $11.5 million.

Founded in 2012 by P.J. Gunsagar (CEO) and Dylan Arena (Chief Learning Scientist), Kidaptive was part of Stanford's StartX accelerator and is currently in the first cohort of Zynga and NewSchools' co.lab accelerator for educational gaming companies.

Leo's Pad is a series of story-driven "appisodes" in which preschool children play through adventures with characters inspired by Leonard da Vinci (who the app is named after), Galileo Galilei and Marie Curie. Four appisodes are currently available. Since its release in December 2012, Leo's Pad has surpassed over 500,000 downloads.

Each appisode contains mini-games and puzzles designed to assess players on basic cognitive tasks related to cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development. "Every interaction the child has in the game gives us data about any of the 87 dimensions of learning that we track...For example, as a kid moves puzzle pieces, we can track spatial reasoning, fine motor, and shape recognition skills." Gunsagar says the team has collected around 200 million such data points so far.

This data is displayed in the Parent's Pad, a dashboard within the app that Kidaptive released this summer. The data and assessment framework is designed by a team and advisory board stacked with learning scientists and education professors including Dan Schwartz, a professor of education at Stanford University. Arena has three Stanford degrees himself.

Both Leo's Pad and Parent's Pad are currently available for free. Next summer the company plans to introduce paid subscriptions that will offer parents in-depth reports about their child's performance, particularly around kindergarten readiness.

With the funding, Kidaptive is set on doubling its team of 20 employees. Further down the pipeline--after all 25 Leo's Pad appisodes are done--it plans to allow third party developers to plug their content into Kidaptive's analytics platform.

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