The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) are investing in Ukrainian-founded Preply, a leading global online language learning platform, to help bolster Ukraine’s tech sector, pave the way for more innovative solutions and aid economic recovery.
The EBRD and IFC are co-investing US$10 million in partnership with Horizon Capital, a prominent growth equity fund manager in Ukraine and Moldova, and a long-standing client of both the EBRD and IFC.
This investment is part of a US$70 million funding initiative led by Horizon Capital. The influx of capital will empower Preply to expand its research and development initiatives, integrate artificial intelligence to enhance the learning experience, and introduce new product lines. With a global reach, the company links approximately 40,000 tutors with the world’s largest interactive language learning community.
“The additional funds will enable us to extend our leadership in the category through AI-powered human tutors, providing a learning experience which is quickly becoming a game changer,” Kirill Bigai, co-founder and CEO of Preply, said. “Though the team today is truly global, as a Ukrainian-founded company with significant R&D in Ukraine, this is a milestone to be celebrated; one that echoes the resilience and determination of the Ukrainian tech sector and all Ukrainians.”
According to the EBRD, despite Ukraine experiencing a drastic 29.1 per cent drop in its GDP in 2022, its technology sector generated “a remarkable $7.3 billion in annual export earnings, exceeding expectations and providing crucial support to the country’s economy”. New investments are crucial for businesses and job creation in Ukraine’s high-risk environment, says EBRD.
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