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When I went to write my year-in-review post in December on “The Business of Ed-Tech,” I realized that I didn’t have the numbers I needed to calculate investment levels or to identify the biggest rounds of funding and the most active investors. So I swore I’d pick up a project that I started in 2013 but hadn’t maintained: the Ed-Tech Matrix, an effort to map the industry’s investments and acquisitions.

As Frank Catalano notes in a recent GeekWire article on 2014’s year of record-setting ed-tech investment, there are lots of different figures as to how much exactly was sunk into the sector. Among those tracking on investments (in ed-tech and beyond): CB Insights, Crunchbase, Ambient Insights, Mattermark, Edsurge, and the SEC.

So why create yet another tracking system?

Mostly it’s so that I can play with the data myself – the raw data, not just the graphs and charts and PDFs that others provide. (It’s time to learn a little about D3.js, I think. My first attempt: January's investments, visualized.)

I’m not completely happy with the data model I’ve created, and I’ll probably tweak it a little before we get too far into the year. But if you’re interested, you can find the JSON files for January’s investment data here. (This project is on GitHub. Feel free to fork.)

Biggest funding of January: Lynda.com’s $186,000,000

Biggest acquisition of January: Pluralsight’s acquisition of Code School for $36,000,000

Like I said back in December: it’s clear we’re seeing a growing emphasis on school as “skills.” Both of these transactions highlight this trend.

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Audrey Watters


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