Englease.com, a UAE-based online English teaching platform, has raised $3.4 million in seed round co-led by US-based LearnCapital and LearnStart.
The round also saw participation from COTU, BY Venture Partners, Hambro Perks Oryx Fund, 500 Global, Dubai Angel Investors and A.L.M.A.
With the fresh capital, the company plans to expedite the development of its live class feature as well as accelerate its geographical expansion.
Founded in 2019 by Omar Chihane, Englease.com offers live English classes online, led by bilingual tutors delivering a UK-accredited curriculum. Students pay a one-time fee to access unlimited live groups classes or select their 1-on-1 tutoring option for up to a full year. The platform focuses on the MENA (Middle East and North America) region, home to over 380 million people with some of the world's lowest English proficiency rates. The company aims to democratize access to synchronous English language education using technology.
Englease.com is on a mission to help 1 million people become proficient in English by providing them with the most affordable and relevant English learning tools.
Speaking about the company, Founder of Englease.com, Omar Chihane, said, "English proficiency is the number one driver of employability in the MENA region, yet the region has the world’s lowest English proficiency rate and has had the world’s highest youth unemployment rate, according to the world bank, 25 years running. The only way to tackle this very real problem was to build a highly impactful solution that is both scalable and affordable."
Currently, Englease.com also provides 3 learning products targeting anyone from beginners with little to no knowledge of the language, to advanced learners looking to enhance their existing English knowledge and skills.
Founder and Managing partner of LearnCapital, Rob Hutter, added, "We, at LearnCapital, believe that the single biggest contributing factor to a country’s GDP growth is leveraging its human capital, and Englease.com’s ability to deliver synchronous English education at scale and their focus on employability across the MENA region set them apart as a category leader in the region."
According to the company, its annual cost rivals the monthly fee of offline English as a Second Language (ESL) schools.
Englease.com attributes its early success to its product quality and stickiness as it further develops reach through university and corporate partnerships.