Another Nigerian edtech startup, Teesas, just successfully closed a $1.6 million pre-seed funding round. This came about in the same month two competing edtechs, uLesson and Edukoya, secured funding rounds as well. The funding round was led by Haresh Aswani of the Tolaram Group with participation from others like Olivegreen Advisory Partners, an African-focused Venture Studio.
Founded in 2021, Teesas is working on providing e-learning platforms that deliver curriculum-aligned educational content via web and mobile applications. The Teesas app targets children in nursery and primary school and teaches core subjects through engaging tutor-led videos and eBooks in English and local Nigerian languages like Hausa, Yoruba, Tiv, Igbo, Benin, etc. They plan to include French soon.
These pre-recorded videos are delivered by highly qualified tutors and uploaded to the app across different grades. Knowing their target audience, Teesas relies heavily on visuals with animation and gamification to make learning even more fun for kids. They also provide e-books and live classes alongside a companion app for parents called Teesas Parents. Teesas Parents provide parents with personalized content recommendations and real-time feedback on their child’s performance such as duration of videos watched within a course, percentage of revision quiz completed, test scores, areas of need, etc.
In response to the funding news, the founder of Teesas, Osayi Izedonmwen, said “We are delighted to have secured this funding just a few months after founding Teesas. It is invigorating that the funding has come from investors who understand what it takes to succeed in Africa and has backed or built fast-growing start-ups within the continent.”
Izedonmwen added that this funding will be deployed by the startup to expand its content to cover the entire K-6 curriculum, expand into other parts of the continent, establish a tutor marketplace and build a more formidable team.
“I have always wanted to impact education through technology, and it is my firm belief that digital learning is the most effective way to bridge the educational gap in Africa and enhance teaching methods. Our strategy at Teesas is to apply indigenous adaptations along with gamification to the child’s learning experience to deepen understanding of core educational concepts at a foundational (K-6) level. Once cognitive skills are set on the right path at the lower schooling years, we see better academic performance as kids move into higher classes,“ he added.
According to lead investor Haresh Aswani, Tolaram believes fully in the vision that the Teesas team has embarked upon. “We believe in the mission Osayi and the Teesas team has set forth on, and we are confident that they are best suited to crack the challenge of using technology to enhance access to quality education across Africa,” Aswani said. Since its beta testing in August and a full launch in November, Teesas already has over 150,000 downloads at the Google Play store.
Their content is aligned with Nigeria’s national curriculum, and currently costs $6 a month for monthly access.