Mumbai-based WhiteHat Education Technology Pvt Ltd, which runs early childhood coding education platform ‘WhiteHat Jr’, has raised US$1.3 million in seed funding from Nexus Venture Partners and Omidyar Network India.
Founded six months ago by bestselling novelist and former Discovery Networks CEO, Karan Bajaj, WhiteHat Jr teaches kids the fundamentals of coding logic, structure and algorithmic thinking to help kids generate creative outcomes. The platform offers a Live online 1:1 sessions that connects kids age 5-12 to top early childhood coding teachers, all from the comfort of kids’ home.
Things like — Coding-sequence, structure, logic, commands and algorithmic thinkin, are currently taught in less than 1% of schools globally, resulting in the major gap in the requirements of the new world and children’s skills. With Whitehat Jr, Bajaj aims to fill this gap by introduceing kids to the basics of computational thinking.
Since its beta launch in January in India, the company has conducted more than 50,000 trials and currently conducts 500 online classes per day. WhiteHat Jr has over 100 teachers on their platform. The company has seen all the slots being 100% booked within 1 hour of release every day and is running a daily waitlist of 150 students. Early graduates of the course have created professional-ready apps downloadable on the App Store at ages as young as nine years old.Based onunprecedented demand, WhiteHat will be launching theProfessional Course for the kids in the age group 13-14 years.
WhiteHat Jr currently offers three level of courses – Beginner| Intermediate| Advanced. Kids use fundamentals of coding—logic, structure, sequence, commands and algorithmic thinking—to create complex games, animations and apps in a live 1:1 online classroom.
Karan Bajaj, Founder & CEO, WhiteHat Jr, said, “We are overwhelmed by the response shown by the parents to a sunrise subject like coding for kids. We are scaling up our operations and technology to cater to the massive influx and keep up with the consumer interest while also ensuring great teaching experience with our teachers, selected by a rigorous selection process. WhiteHat will be launching the 4th course in its curriculum which will be a professional level course for the kids in age group of 13-14 years.”
Anup Gupta, Managing Director, Nexus Venture Partners, said, “WhiteHat Jr is off to an impressive start and has demonstrated great skill in creating a robust tech and operations model to deliver an innovative, personalized educational experience to kids. We are excited to partner withKaran and his team in their journey.”
Namita Dalmia, Principal, Investments, Omidyar Network India, said, “At Omidyar Network India, we believe that computational thinking skills are vital to better equip individuals to navigate the complexities of the 21st century. WhiteHat Jr is building a highly scalable, online live teaching platform focused on building skills which are as foundational as literacy and numeracy from an early stage. By reimagining what is taught and how students learn in the 21st century, they have the potential to create meaningful outcomes for every student in India.”
Founded by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar and his wife, Omidyar had announced that it plans to invest close to $250 million in Indian startup ventures and organizations over the next 4-5 years. In October last year, Roopa Kudva managing director of Omidyar India partner had told a business daily that the firm will look to enter new areas and sectors such as citizen-focused legal services, property rights and public platforms.