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Funding

Workplace edtech unicorn Go1 raises new funds, with Insight Partners investing, to acquire German synopsis startup Blinkist

- May 9, 2023 2 MIN READ
Go1, Andrew Barnes
Go1 cofounder Andrew Barnes
Brisbane workplace learning platform Go1 has stitched together an undisclosed capital raising deal to acquire German summary startup Blinkist in a deal believed to be worth $100 million.

Go1 has been on a merger spree since raising $140 million on a $2.8 billion valuation in June last year. GO1 previously raised $273 million in a Series D a year earlier, led by SoftBank. The business has now raised more than $400 million.

In January the company acquired UK content curation startup Anders Pink for an undisclosed sum. And it’s just over 12 months since Go1 acquired Swiss rival Coorpacademy.

Blinkist is a mobile-first learning app that creates summaries of books and podcasts for time-poor people to digest as explainers in just 15 minutes. It has around 6,500 titles in its library and more than 26 million downloads on the Berlin-based synopsis platform, with high user engagement and around 1,500 businesses among its one million paying subscribers. The company also offers employers leadership and skill development to their staff.

 

While the terms of the acquisition, in cash and shares, was not disclosed, Techcrunch reports that Blinkist’s largest investor, Insight Partners, took an additional US$30 million in equity in Go1 at an “upround” that’s believed to value the business at around $3.5 billion.

It five years since Blinkist, founded in 2012, last raised capital on a valuation of US$110 million. It will continue to operate as a standalone business with 150 staff, with Go1 customers having access to the app’s library.

Go1 cofounder and co-CEO Andrew Barnes said the deal expands his company’s appeal when it comes to learning new skills and staying up to date on business and self-improvement.

“The combination of Go1 and Blinkist offers something not replicated in any corner of the corporate learning market: an experience of ongoing learning that serves professional goals that’s purpose-built to be personally engaging,” he said.

“Go1 is not entering the content production market – we’re combining our existing content aggregation service with Blinkist’s similar service for books to open a new model for consumption of any type of learning content.”

Insight Partners managing director Thilo Semmelbauer said they pleased to be an investor in both companies.

“Blinkist’s mobile content and product will expand the learning opportunities already available to Go1’s customers and create a powerful pair with Go1’s corporate learning offering,” he said.

Go1’s backers also include SEEK, Microsoft’s M12, Madrona Venture Group, and AirTree, with Blinkist’s other investors Greycroft, Headline, IBB, and MGO, now joining its cap table.

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