Fiveable, a Milwaukee-based online social learning platform that seeks to democratize learning and empower students through educational content, community, and collaboration, has raised $10 million as a part of its Series A funding round led by New York City-based Union Square Ventures.
Education technology-focused venture capital firm Owl Ventures and early-stage venture capital firm Progression Fund have also participated in the round.
With the new funding, the company plans to grow its team to serve 18 million US high school students, covering topics including high school academics, college and career exploration, vocational training, finances, and mental health.
Fiveable helps students grow together beyond the classroom through authentic content and community specifically built by and for students. The platform exposes students to new realities and opportunities, putting the power back into their hands by providing students with access to resources, peer support, and collaborative tools. The team has been committed to a student-first approach by hiring and paying student interns in all departments, supporting the entire student experience beyond just academics, and creating student focus groups that drive the company's roadmap.
The company was co-founded in 2018 by educator and activist Amanda DoAmaral along with community builder Tán Ho and has supported more than 7 million high school students with its online community that was originally focused on the Advanced Placement (AP) test prep. The goal is to reach the country's 18 million high school students with ongoing holistic support across areas like high school academics, SATs and ACTs, college and career exploration, vocational training, finance, mental health, activism, and more. To support these new initiatives, Fiveable plans to grow its team in the coming year with key hires across the product, engineering, and design.
Speaking about the company, Co-founder and Chief Experience Officer of Fiveable Tán Ho said in a statement,
"Providing students with academic support is critical, but so is taking a holistic approach to their personal growth by introducing topics like financial literacy or sharing actionable advice related to mental health. We're not here to implement traditional learning models. We're here to build community-driven support systems that empower young people to see themselves not only as students but also as forces of change and inspiration."
In 2021, Fiveable increased retention with its strategic acquisition of Hours, a virtual studying platform, and scaled to other 38 AP subjects.
Rebecca Kaden, Managing Partner, Union Square Ventures, has said,
"USV's thesis focuses on opportunities to leverage platforms and networks to broaden access by increasing value and decreasing cost. In education, we believe this is going to happen from outside of the current systems - new networks that emerge to provide value in ways that are far more personalized, accessible, and relatable to students. This is exactly what Fiveable is - a network and community of loyal and passionate students that is bottom-up, devoted, and quickly becoming essential to how students learn. We are thrilled to be a part of it."
Fiveable's Co-founder Amanda DoAmaral said the company is becoming the go-to platform and base for students to really live on and learn on.
In pursuit of growth, DoAmaral views the biggest challenge for Fiveable as one that any community has to reckon with, ensuring the integrity of the space from both infrastructure and community perspective.
The Series A funding brings Fiveable's total raised to $14.2 million. Earlier, the company had raised $2.3 million in October 2020 and an undisclosed amount in April 2021 from investors such as BBG Ventures, Chelsea Clinton's Metrodora Ventures, Serena Williams' Serena Ventures, Swell Partners, SoGal, Spero Ventures, Matchstick Ventures, Cream City Venture Capital, Deborah Quazzo, 27V, and Golden Angel among others.