Crack the Code is an edtech startup of online coding courses for children and teens based in Peru. They have just received an initial funding round of US$2.7 million led by Kaszek Ventures.
This is the first investment that Kaszek – a venture capital fund specialized in technology – has made in a Peruvian company.
Colombian María Velez is the founder and CEO of Crack the Code. The company started in Peru and has expanded to other Latin American countries: Mexico, Colombia, and several Central American countries.
With this new investment, the edtech will seek to increase its presence in Mexico and grow towards the rest of the Latin American countries. According to Vélez, they will use some resources from this round to hire talent in the technology and marketing areas.
In addition, three regional and strategic educational groups joined the round, such as Grupo Talisis in Mexico. Through their study plans they seek to teach children between 9 and 11 years old. They consider that these are excellent ages in which children begin to identify their tastes and interests.
Founded in late 2017, Crack the Code has so far grown with little capital and funding from the CEO, except for a US$95,000 pre-seed round. So far, the company has reached more than 5,000 children and adolescents in 22 countries.
Reducing The Skills Gap in LatAm
Crack the Code seeks to reduce the skills gap in Latin America, particularly those related to STEM.
By focusing on programming and coding skills, Crack the Code is part of the solution to the talent problem that currently exists in the region.
Teaching new technology skills to kids aged 5-18 can guide them to a career in STEM. Crack the Code also offers specialized programs for girls, promoting the inclusion of women in tech from an early stage.
Edtech has been an undercapitalized but promising area in Latin America in recent years. It only accounted for 4% of venture capital investment (by number of deals) in 2019, according to a LAVCA report.
The Crack the Code model goes towards B2C. Vélez – sister of David Vélez, co-founder and CEO of Nubank – sought to create a company with social impact that could also make a profit. In Latin America, it is estimated that virtual courses will create a market of US$10 billion dollars by 2025. In 2020, a total of US$83 million dollars were invested in edtech in Latam; and in 2021, this will go up to US$299 million dollars.
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