Five points about the world’s largest interactive classroom

One of the EdTech sector’s most impressive companies, Shaw Academy, continues its rapid development by delivering engaging, interactive and real time education across the globe at an affordable price to users seeking to upskill and develop their skill set.

By challenging the cost of education and adopting a strategy of teaching in a one-to-one manner to many online, Shaw Academy’s business model is working, and the future looks bright for the Dublin-based operation.

As the funding round for Shaw Academy enters the final stretch (closes 29th April), we thought you might be interested in these five key talking points about the company:

1. Growing Rapidly Across the World

The business is globally diversified, selling to students in Europe (41%), the Americas (28%), Asia (12%), Oceania (5%) and Africa (14%). Founded in 2012, the company has experienced rapid growth. In 2014, Shaw Academy had 12 unique courses on offer, 70k students and €2.7m in revenues. By 2017, there were 58 unique courses available, 1.7m students and almost €10m in revenues. This represents compound annual growth rates of 190% for students, 69% in unique courses and 52% in revenues.

2. Four Million Students & Counting

Shaw Academy has, to date, taught over four million students worldwide. Its interactive courses are internationally accredited and have been developed across Marketing, Business, Technology, Wellness and Creative faculties. Currently, Shaw Academy is teaching 250,000 new students globally every month.


3. Purpose Built, Personalised Ed Tech Platform

A key reason for Shaw Academy’s continued growth has been the development of its own personalised educational technology platform. Entitled Phoenix, this enables Shaw Academy to teach more students online in an interactive fashion simultaneously than ever before.

Subscribers registering for their chosen subject are taken on a journey that will focus on their outcome. Shaw Academy fully tailor information to students based on subject choice, experience level and desired career path. Numerous gamification elements are also deployed throughout the period of study relevant to the subject to further boost completion rates, satisfaction levels and NPS scores.

Most importantly Phoenix allows Shaw Academy to teach at scale and comfortably accommodate over one million students every month breaking down barriers to growth and ensuring Shaw Academy expands globally.

4. Proven Executive Team & Experienced Leaders

The strategic decision taken by Shaw Academy in 2017 to develop its leadership team has reaped dividends. Stephen Murphy’s appointment as Chairman of the board brings a wealth of experience to the role having previously served as CEO of Virgin Group from 2005-2011 after succeeding founder, Sir Richard Branson. Whilst leading the Virgin Group as CEO, Mr Murphy oversaw the creation of many new Virgin businesses including Virgin Blue in Australia and Virgin America in the US and saw revenues exceed $20 billion in 2010.

The executive team at Shaw Academy is stacked with proven and experienced leaders. Notable amongst these are Aashish Nanavati (former Head of Traffic & Customer Acquisition at Amazon Prime) as Chief Marketing Officer. Since joining, Mr Nanavati has helped improve customer acquisition and Shaw Academy currently acquires 250,000 new students every month (and rising!).

Gavin McGrath, Shaw’s Chief People Officer, formerly held senior positions at Amazon, & PayPal. The new talent is combined with key individuals who have grown up with the organisation, including CTO, Ajit Parthan (former Senior Manager at Yahoo) and John White, Chief Strategy Officer (former Head of Corporate Partnerships & Communications at VSO).

5. Recognised Partners & International Recognition

Another important pillar of Shaw Academy’s rise has been its partnerships with recognised brands across the globe. This policy of having its content endorsed by major players across the telecoms, recruitment and e-commerce sector, has enabled Shaw Academy to acquire hundreds of thousands of new users.

The likes of Vodafone, Adobe, Virgin Mobile, O2 and Stepstone have all helped Shaw Academy position education as a lifestyle choice and follow a proven route by incumbents in this area, including Spotify & Netflix.

Shaw Academy’s meteoric rise has also not gone unnoticed. In February, Shaw Academy was recognised on the Inc. 5000 Europe 2018 listing. The prestigious listing evaluates Europe’s fastest growing private companies by evaluating three-year revenue growth. As an Inc 5000 European honouree, Shaw Academy joins illustrious company, such as Under Armour, Oracle and Microsoft who have previously featured on the list at different stages of their journey and puts the company in the spotlight as one to watch.

If you would like to learn more about Shaw Academy’s impressive performance and the chance to invest in its high-growth, EIS eligible operation in this exciting sector, then please click here.

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