The social learning company Grockit has announced that
Discovery Communications will lead a new investment round in the firm. Other
investors include Summit Group, investors in Uber and Scribd, and previous
investors Atlas Venture, Benchmark Capital, Integral Capital Partners and GSV
Grockit launched Learnist in May 2012. The site allows users
to learn from and teach each other users about a wide range of academic and
casual subjects. Since launch, Learnist's user base has increased by 40%, and
user-engagement has doubled.
The Grockit investment reflects Discovery's ongoing
expansion in the educational market. As part of the investment, Grockit noted
that its relationship with Discovery includes shared technology and the
possibility for working together on exploring marketing, distribution and
promotion opportunities for Learnist.
"As Discovery focuses its digital strategy around
strengthening its position in video as the #1 nonfiction media company across
all screens, we also see strategic growth opportunities in select investments
in the next generation knowledge space," said JB Perrette, chief digital
officer, Discovery Communications, said in a statement announcing the
investment. "Discovery's commitment to igniting people's curiosity and passion
for learning is a natural fit with Learnist's unique knowledge platform and
model that encourages passionate audiences to share what they know and learn
what they don't."
The latest round of funding comes as Grockit launched a redesigned
Learnist website that better highlights its growing community of experts,
including Bobby Chang, founder of In-Case; Clark Scheffy, founder of Ideo; and
Eric Ries, the best-selling author of The
As part of the updates, the Learnist apps for iPhone and
iPad have also been revamped.
Commenting on the Discovery investment Roy Gilbert, CEO of
Grockit, noted in a statement that "our relationship will combine Learnist
social learning technology with Discovery's massive reach and footprint.
Together, we look forward to encouraging more people to share what they know
and learn from each other."