Education Insider: Special Edition on EdTech and Investment

Although the numbers vary, nearly all accounts point to an acceleration in edtech deal-flow over the last year. According to EdSurge, there were 107 edtech deals for U.S. companies during the first half of 2015 ($1.1 billion in investment). GSV Advisors reports $1.2 billion in investment in U.S. edtech deals for the same period ($1.7 billion as of October 2015), compared with $1.8 billion total for all of 2014.

For this Special Edition of Education Insider, we surveyed approximately 50 of the most knowledgeable education technology investors, strategic buyers, and bankers in the business (October 23 - November 6). Our ‰"EdTech Insiders" represent a cross-section of investment stages and approaches, including seed, venture and private equity. Their views matter because they are among the most connected and active education industry players today ‰-- and are driving millions of dollars in economic activity as a result. The decisions they make and their perceptions will help determine whether education technology advances equity and social impact or reinforces today's problematic status quo.

The goal of our first edtech survey is not precision or depth, but rather an overall understanding of trends, priorities, and concerns animating edtech investment today.

Among the findings:

  • Two-thirds of Insiders believe edtech companies are overvalued.
  • 44% of Insiders see corporate training or lifelong learning as the most attractive segment of the market for investment.
  • Insiders believe that the direct to consumer market for K-12 education will expand.
  • Despite the explosion of freemium offerings, 31% of Insiders express skepticism about the model‰'s sustainability. The traditional K-12 distribution model, according to Insiders, is here to stay.