The Italian team behind London education technology start-up fluentify has secured the backing of a group of angel backers.
Founded in 2013, the fluentify platform pairs native speakers with those looking to learn. Native speakers, who are dubbed ‘fluentifiers’, are first vetted by the platform and then allowed to charge their own rates of between $8 and $30 per 30-minute session.
Giacomo Moiso, co-founder and CEO of fluentify, says that the inspiration for the business came form living in several cites abroad.
‘We found that talking with native speakers was by far the most effective way to pick up a language locally.
‘We plan to use the funds for new hires and to focus on perfecting our proposition in southern Europe before scaling. Our overall aim is to help language learners around the world to perfect their ability in a safe environment where they can make mistakes.’
According to a statement, most of the $410,000 (£250,000) has come from former chairman of Barclays global financial institutions group Stefano Marsaglia. The angel investor is also current co-head of Mediobanca investment bank.
More on recent angel fundraisings:
- Angel investors from SaaS and e-commerce unite
- Anne Glover and Jon Moulton lead investment
- Terry Leahy continues angel investing by backing Atterley Road
A total of $500,000 has now been raised by fluentify, which will now look to grow its proposition out of southern Europe.
‘All that’s needed is a microphone, a webcam and an internet connection so a tutor and a student can use the platform anywhere in the world. Speaking is the most effective, simple and natural way to learn a language,’ Moiso adds.
The average price charged by a native speaker on fluentify is $13, and the platform takes a 20 per cent service fee.