Hahow, the largest online learning platform in Taiwan, has recently raised $10 million in a Series B funding round led by UMC Capital, a fully-owned subsidiary of United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), and the National Development Fund.
The company is looking to further tap the $1.4 billion market for smart learning in Taiwan, with a vision to become the Netflix of the education industry.
Speaking about the company, Arnold Chiang, Co-founder of Hahow, said,
"Going forward, online learning will be more than just for mastery of difficult subjects. There is also an edutainment element to it. At Hahow, we will continue to bring high-quality IPs to new generations of learners, with the goal to strengthen our leading position and become the Netflix in the education industry."
Since its founding in 2015, Hahow has expanded from B2C to B2B and evolved into an EdTech company providing courses across diverse media formats.
Ranked among Taiwan's top 50 and Asia's top 150 most innovative and promising EdTech companies by leading EdTech market research firm HolonIQ, Hahow is known for its widely popular B2C online courses. Over the past two years, as part of its efforts to gain more traction in the online education market, the company has expanded into B2B with Hahow for Business, a suite of online learning services designed for enterprises. Built upon the company's solid foundation in producing online courses, Hahow for Business provides high-quality content, products, and data-driven consulting services to help businesses meet digital transformation goals by implementing corporate training in a smart and motivating way.
According to Arnold Chiang, the latest funding will mainly be used to integrate new forms of media into Hahow's course offerings and enhance its one-stop digital learning services. The company also plans to strengthen its three key strengths on the back of tech investment and data on learning behavior:
(1) Approachable content and learning tools: beyond pre-recorded course offerings, Hahow plans to add live-streamed lessons and content in posts or short videos to expand the variety of learning tools it offers;
(2) In-depth assessment of learning outcome: more than just offering stand-alone courses, Hahow seeks to help learners gain specialized skills with the aid of learning maps, teaching assistants, learning community engagement and a certification system; and
(3) One-stop platform that brings content creators together: Hahow will provide aspiring instructors with an even more user-friendly back-end and go-to-market services that meet traffic monetization needs on both B2C and B2B ends.
Due to the impact of COVID-19, the environment for talent development and organizational structure has undergone significant changes. Made for the B2B world, Hahow for Business not only saw a twofold increase in enrollment and class hours quarter over quarter but also successfully landed close to one hundred business clients, including established names in the tech and financial sectors, such as the Cloud Computing Product Division of Foxconn Technology Group, Cathay Holdings, and Qisda, according to a news release.
With the creator economy on the rise, Hahow also provides a one-stop platform for content creators to unlock monetization opportunities. Besides general consumers, content providers are also Hahow's customers. They can be anyone from a professional speaker or subject expert to a content creator or publisher. The company claimed that so far over 22% of the content creators and instructors on Hahow has earned more than US$36,000, approximately one million in New Taiwan dollars, from the courses they launched. Among them are Hailey Richards and Ryuuu TV's Ryu and Yuma, expat YouTubers with over a million subscribers, who have generated around US$600,000 in revenue from their Hahow courses.
Hahow was founded with a vision that everyone has valuable skills or knowledge to share. The company name resembles the pronunciation of "school" (ha̍k-hāu) in Taiwanese. It is the first in the world to apply the crowdfunding model to the online learning space. Now a multidisciplinary course platform, Hahow is also an expert in content adaptation for the digital learning context. Devoted to fulfilling the demand for all kinds of knowledge and skills, Hahow offers a stage for anyone to teach and earn from their expertise.
The company has worked with 600 instructors and helped produce close to 700 courses, which have been enjoyed by over 680,000 students across the globe. Six years into its operation, Hahow claimed its revenue has grown 300% year over year, reaching a new record of over $13.4 million in 2021.