Madrid-based upskilling platform StudentFinance has raised €39 million in a Series A funding round comprised of both debt and equity. When asked specifically about the split, StudentFinance declined to comment. The investment will see the company launch operations in the UK and Germany as well as expand its offer in Spain.
The €39 million Series A round was led by Iberis Capital on the equity side, and SmartLenders Asset Management on the debt side, with support from Armilar Venture Partners, Mustard Seed Maze, Giant Ventures and Seedcamp. Including this round, StudentFinance has raised a total of €44.7 million since late 2019. The startup also received backing from former UK Culture and Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey, Monzo founder Tom Blomfield, and Martin Villig from Bolt.
With the World Economic Forum predicting that approximately 1 billion people will need retraining by 2030, and Accenture estimating a $11.5 trillion loss in global GDP if upskilling goals are not met, StudentFinance’s offer seems ever so pressing.
Using AI-driven models to map the most in-demand skills across a range of industries StudentFinance qualifies leading education providers that are tackling these needed skills gaps, and provides flexible financing options to people seeking to upskill through those programmes.
StudentFinance is applying a novel approach to solving two problems in one go. The platform addresses the growing skills gap and seeks to democratise education simultaneously, namely by providing the necessary technology for education providers to offer flexible payment plans in the form of Income Share Agreements (ISAs) and job market data intelligence in order to accurately forecast demand.
According to the company, since 2020 StudentFiance has helped individuals access more than 250 upskilling programs through more than 50 education providers. The company has managed over €15 million worth of financing, resulting in an average salary increase of 50% post-training for users.
“The demand for workforce upskilling has never been greater. We’re on a mission to plug this gap across Europe while empowering individuals to level up their careers. Our platform is currently over-subscribed so, with the new funds, we’re looking forward to helping as many people as possible embark on training courses to upskill,” commented StudentFinance co-founder and CEO Mariano Kostelec. “We aim to expand our coverage to build the workforce for the future, in particular in areas such as technology, AI, and climate change.”