Ludenso, an augmented-reality educational platform provider based in Oslo, Norway, has raised $1M in its seed funding round led by FERD, with the participation also from Kahoot! founders Johan Brand and Jamie Brooker, Atomico Angel Fund, and various angels including Anne Lise Waal (CTO of VR-platform Attensi).
According to the startup, the fresh capital will be used for the market expansion throughout Europe and the United Kingdom. Last month, Ludenso launched in the UK following a period of sustained growth in Norway and the European market.
Founded by Eirik Wahlstrm, Harald Manheim, and Ingrid Skrede in 2021, Ludenso provides an application that allows students to scan textbook pages and see their learning resources come to life.
Collaborating with a number of Scandinavian institutions including the University of Oslo, the startup has built the world’s first augmented reality authoring tool specifically for publishers, which allows editorial teams without technical expertise to retrofit existing or new print textbooks with 3D models, videos, audio and links. These improved learning experiences can then be accessed via the Ludenso Explore app by students with access to that textbook.
Teachers who use Ludenso supported material in their classrooms report that the platform better engages students who struggle to read traditional materials, addressing the issue of student engagement, which is a problem for four-in-five (79%) Americans who struggle to stay motivated while studying. Notably, early clients like Aschehoug, SAGE and PG Online are enriching their textbooks with AR in order to differentiate their list and cater for learning styles that are often overlooked.
Data from the Norwegian market already shows a 43% uplift in sales of AR-enriched titles to date. Currently, every 6 to 16-year-old in Norway studying science as part of the company’s partnership with leading academic publisher Aschehoug.
Ludenso’s CEO Eirik Wahlstrøm said, “One of the things that motivates me the most is seeing the “a-ha” moment from students accompanied by a big smile. 3D and AR is an amazing tool to explore and learn about concepts that are hard to visualize, such as how the heart is pumping or how the earth’s geomagnetic fields are working. This funding will enable us to impact millions of students with more engaging and active learning experiences in the years to come!”
Johan Brand, founder of Kahoot! and investor said, “For too long, educational content has been stale and lacking excitement. In spite of incredible innovations elsewhere, the world of academia has often felt like an afterthought. When I was introduced to Ludenso, I knew I had to be involved. The team is on to something very special, creating real pedagogical value for educators and learners.”