Quizlet, a flashcard tool that became an artificial intelligence learning platform, is planning an IPO almost a year after it was valued at $ 1 billion. Quizlet is well advanced on its way to going public, according to people familiar with the matter. A recent job advertisement shows that the company is hiring managerial positions to “help develop financial systems and processes on the path to an IPO”.
In an email to TechCrunch, the San Francisco-based edtech startup declined to comment. Quizlet didn’t say much about its sales details or whether it’s profitable. Last year the still private startup claimed to grow its sales by 100% annually. On its website, Quizlet says it has 60 million learners a month, 10 million more learners than in 2018.
Quizlet has built a large-scale company around easy-to-share and easy-to-use products. Its free flashcard maker helps students create study guides on topics to prepare for exams. These insights fuel Quizlet Plus, the startup’s subscription product, which costs $ 47.88 per year to access additional features, including tutoring services.
Quizlet’s tutoring arm, also known as Quizlet Learn, is the company’s most popular offering, according to CEO Matthew Glotzbach. As a student progresses through the system, Quizlet Learn consistently rates students to see where they’re making mistakes – and where they’re making progress.
“It obviously doesn’t replace a person yet, and it can’t even come close to replacing it, but it can give you that guidance and point you in the right direction and help you spend your time in the right places,” he said. “Just helping set goals is such an important step in learning.”
Quizlet recently announced the introduction of Explanation, a feature that provides step-by-step instructions for solving problem sets from popular textbooks. The function was “written and verified by experts” and is intended to help students “better understand the reasoning and thought process behind study questions so that they can practice and apply what they have learned themselves,” a statement said. It also recaptured the Q from its less fortunate predecessor, amid a complete rebranding.
Quizlet’s quiet march toward the public markets was slow but steady. The startup was founded in 2005 by 15-year-old Andrew Sutherland. It was fully booted by 2015. Glotzbach, who previously worked as a manager at YouTube, joined in 2016. The startup still doesn’t seem to have a CFO, which is rare for companies that go public.
Quizlet raised much of its $ 62 million venture capital under Glotzbach. Investors in the company now include General Atlantic, Owl Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Costanoa Ventures, and Altos Ventures.
Quizlet’s pursuit of the public markets takes place while other edtech companies demonstrate the market’s acceptance of the sector. Duolingo, for example, is another consumer-focused education company, albeit one that is industry-focused, as opposed to Quizlet’s decision to stay broad. Duolingo went public in July and is currently trading above its opening price of $ 169.75 per share.