MasterClass, which sells online classes often taught by celebrities, has raised $225 million in Series F funding, led by Fidelity Management & Research Company, with participation from new investors including Baillie Gifford, Balyasny Asset Management and Eldridge together with existing investors IVP, Javelin Venture Partners, NEA and Owl Ventures.

Additional new and existing investors in the round included 01 Advisors, Atomico, Bonnier Ventures, Cleo Capital, Dan Capital Management, NewView Capital, NextEquity Partners, Outlier Ventures, Powerhouse Capital, RPS Ventures, Family Office of Ronald Lauder and UTA.

The Series F financing follows a $100 million Series E round that MasterClass closed a year ago, bringing its total funding to date to more than $475million.

The San Francisco-based company said it would use the new finding to increase content production and launch in new international markets making its full portfolio of classes available in more languages and introducing new international talent to the instructor line-up.

It will also launch a new enterprise business and increase headcount. The company has more than 380 employees and plans to expand its workforce to over 500 this year, which will include a new office in Eastern Canada.

MasterClass’s chief executive David Rogier said: “Over the past several years we have seen a surge in subscriber growth as people are driven to fulfil their desire for lifelong learning outside of the confines of traditional education – MasterClass enables that, with our incredible roster of instructors, cinematic production capabilities and singular focus on restoring the joy of learning. We are grateful to our investors for their support and this new funding, which will enable us to enhance our global offering for subscribers and capture the meaningful market opportunity we see.”

Rick Yang, general partner and head of consumer investing at NEA, added: “As an early investor in MasterClass, we continue to be impressed by the company’s track record of continuous innovation and rapid growth, all while remaining focused on fiscal responsibility and sustainability. MasterClass has a diverse content portfolio that provides unprecedented access to world class instructors, positioning it uniquely within the streaming sector and driving strong customer loyalty. We are thrilled to continue to partner with this category-defining company as it unlocks new opportunities in this pivotal next phase of growth and success.”

Date published: 18 May 2021

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