Penguin Random House’s parent company Bertelsmann has launched an education technology fund in Brazil.
The BR Education Ventures fund will help Bertelsmann take the “next step in the education sector”, which it describes as a “global growth market”.
The fund, set up with Brazilian investment company Bozano Investimentos, will invest about €30m in eight to 10 companies and will focus on companies that “offer solutions and services in the field of education technology”.
Fernando Carro, the Bertelsmann Group Management Committee member responsible for Latin America, said: “Both the education business as a global growth market and the emerging economic region of Brazil play a central role in Bertelsmann’s growth strategy.
“This is why we opened a Corporate Center here in 2012, to further develop our existing businesses and build new ones. We are making good progress, and now with our new BR Education Ventures fund we are taking the next step in the education sector. We will continue to invest in the region.”
The fund’s first investment is in Evolve, a company that produces and distributes educational video content for companies and organisations.
A second investment in QMágico, an online platform that connects students, teachers and educational content providers and creates individual learning environments, is “imminent”.
Thomas Mackenbrock, head of Bertelsmann’s Corporate Center in São Paulo, said that the fund gave the company early access to innovative Brazilian companies at a time when there was “progressive digitisation and the increasing demand for education in Latin America”.
Bertelsmann holds a roughly 30% stake in BR Ventures Education, while Bozano Investimentos serves as the fund’s manager.
In Brazil Penguin Random House owns a 45% stake in the publishing house Companhia das Letras, while other Bertelsmann divisions also operate in the area.