UBITS, a B2B online learning platform to skill employees in Latin America, has raised $25 million in funding led by Riverwood Capital.
Julian Melo and Marta Foro founded UBITS in Bogota, Colombia in 2018, when the pair came up with the idea to “build Netflix for corporate training for LatM.” He applied to Y Combinator, raised a seed round, and moved back to Colombia to create a program and course that launched in January 2019.
“In the beginning, we had 30 to 40 courses and technically not that good,” admits Melo. “Today, we have over 750 courses, which we believe are the largest list of corporate training available in Spanish today, as well as great facilities that help students apply what they learn.”
The startup even today has a “very powerful dashboard,” according to Melo, where companies can track all learning analytics and view metrics such as number of courses, completion rates, ranking of courses, and many more. UBITS is also working on further personalizing its offering so that each employee has their own training path.
“We get to help them grow personally and in their careers,” Melo said.
In the last two years, UBITS has increased its revenues “over 8x” and now works with hundreds of enterprises such as Mercado Libre, Siemens and Kimberly Clark. In 2021, revenue grew “2.5x” and its subscriber base more than tripled — from 110 to nearly 350. At the end of 2021, about 100,000 students had used its platform, up from 28,000 a year earlier. The startup has also partnered with Coursera to provide access to UBITS courses in the B2C market.
“We aim to have over 1,000 enterprise and midmarket customers and over 1 million students using the platform by the end of 2022,” Melo told Nerdshala.
In addition to Riverwood, edtech-focused Owl Ventures (which led a $5 million Series A round last June), Endeavor Catalyst and Roble Ventures also participated in the financing. The company also received a strategic investment from Stanford University.
UBITS offers companies an annual per-user subscription to pay their employees to provide unlimited access to a virtual content library and live sessions. Employees can choose from lessons that focus on a range of skills – from soft to technical, such as leadership, sales and commercial competencies, technology training and education, among others.
The startup also partners with “top local experts” to offer micro courses and live classes. As mentioned above, companies can then monitor and analyze KPIs and optimize the learning journey of their employees.
“We are personalizing the experience with algorithms based on AI so that we can recommend enough courses and content to each person based on their behavior on the platform,” Melo said.
Over the years, UBITS has expanded to Mexico and Peru and, in fact, now has dual headquarters in Mexico, where its two co-founders now reside. So far, students have completed more than 600,000 courses on its platform. The startup plans to use its new capital to increase “its proprietary content” and add more than 2,000 new courses, continues to build AI-based functionalities and in new locations such as Chile, Spain and other Spanish-speaking markets. is to launch. There are also plans to double his team of 280 this year.
“Our main goals are to create more content, improve technology, and hire more engineers and content creators, as well as people in product development, sales, and customer success. We want to not only bring in more customers but keep them.” Want to keep and expand them.”
Francisco lvarez-Demalde, co-founder and managing partner of Riverwood Capital, believes that UBITS has developed a “disruptive employee-focused corporate learning platform with an engaging Spanish language offering that helps employees navigate their professional journey.” Contains much-needed ingredients to grow and grow with your companies, while improving retention, productivity and business results.”
Federico Storani, executive director of Riverwood Capital, is joining the board of UBITS as part of the funding. He believes the startup’s greatest strength is that its “upskilling content is accessible and addresses the clear gap in the market for employees of all levels of enterprises and mid-market companies in the region.”
“LatAm has the biggest skills gap in the world. We want to solve this problem by helping people grow, so companies will grow, and the region will have a better society and economy,” Mello said.