Impact, Investments in funds - 10.3.2020
Managed by Sparkmind.vc, the Sparkmind Fund (formerly EduImpact Fund) is the first venture capital fund in Finland to focus on the education sector. The €40 million fund will specialise in investing in educational technology. Investors include state-owned Tesi (Finnish Industry Investment Ltd) and KRR III, Elo Mutual Pension Insurance Company, the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation, the Saastomoinen Foundation, the Konstsamfundet foundation, the Trade Union of Education OAJ, OP Financial Group, the City of Espoo, Tradeka-sijoitus, and the University of Jyväskylä.
Sparkmind.vc’s founders Marko Kyyrönen, Antti Korhonen, Kai Talas and Vesa Laakso together possess over 70 years’ experience in the educational sector, corporate development, VC investment and financing. The fund will invest in a full spectrum of EduTech growth companies, ranging from early childhood education through to lifelong learning and companies’ in-house training solutions. Investments will cover seed round funding up to B-series financing of portfolio companies. The fund made its first investment in Finnish Fuzu, whose scalable learning platform focuses on solving lifelong learning and employment problems in developing markets.
The global education market is estimated to be worth over USD 6,000 billion, and this figure is forecast to increase to USD 10,000 billion by 2030. The fund’s geographical focus is Finland and Northern Europe, but it may invest also outside this area.
“In terms of size, EduTech is one of the world’s largest sectors. Despite that, the total market value of the world’s educational enterprises is still rather modest. The EduTech sector’s impressive growth in innovations and market size opens up a unique opportunity for sector specialists to create value during the 2020s. Numerous professionally-led, growth-oriented companies have entered the learning sector in the Nordic and Baltic countries in recent years, which is very fortuitous timing for VC investors,” says Sparkmind.vc’s CEO Marko Kyyrönen.
“A particular competitive advantage for fast-growing Finnish EduTech enterprises is their in-depth expertise in educational research, and the R&D capabilities they derive from it.” Utilising their commercial and technological expertise, many of our portfolio companies can make a sustainable impact that goes hand-in-hand with scalable business success.”
“Finland is built on education, so it’s great to see a fund specialising in it assembling a team that has already demonstrated its commitment. At Tesi we will follow impact measurement in the educational sector with keen interest, as this is a key theme for us also,” comments Tesi’s Investment Director Riitta Jääskeläinen.
Photo (from left): Kai Taalas, Vesa Laakso, Antti Korhonen and Marko Kyyrönen.
For further information:
Sparkmind.vc, CEO Marko Kyyrönen, tel. +358 44 506 9740, email@example.com
Tesi, Investment Director Riitta Jääskeläinen, tel. +358 50 309 2733, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sparkmind.vc is a Nordic venture capital fund specialising in the EduTech sector. We invest in teams that can transform the educational sector, from early childhood education right through to lifelong learning. Investments are targeted at early-stage companies that are expanding internationally, and individual investments can be up to €5 million. www.sparkmind.vc
Tesi (Finnish Industry Investment Ltd) is a state-owned investment company that wants to raise Finland to the front ranks of renewing economic growth by investing in funds and directly in companies. We invest profitably and responsibly, hand-in-hand with co-investors, to create the world’s new success stories. Our investments under management total 1.2 billion euros. Ambition for ownership and success www.tesi.fi | www.dtg.tesi.fi | @TesiFII