Riiid, a South Korean startup reshaping education with artificial intelligence (AI), has raised $41.8m in a pre-Series D funding round.

This includes funding from existing investor IMM Investment, as well as state-run Korea Development Bank, Intervest and NVESTOR, and brings the total raised by Riiid to $70.2m.

Riiid’s primary product is Santa, a mobile test app for leading English proficiency exam Test of English for International Communication.

This uses AI to analyse student content and data, and is able to predict scores and user behaviour, building a personalised study plan in real-time to give students the best chance of passing the exam.

The app reached the number one spot in Japan and Korea for education apps, and has been used by over a million students across the two countries.

However, having proved the success of its AI technology on the app, Riiid is now focusing on applying it to back-end solutions for a host of institutions across the world, including education ministries, school districts and companies.

Riiid funding to bring AI solutions to global education amid pandemic

This new funding is designed to support this changed goal, with Riiid planning to use it to enhance its deep learning technology that underpins its ability to provide tailored, real-time study support, as well as expand into a host of global markets, including the US, South America and Middle East.

As part of this, Riiid has established Riiid Labs in Silicon Valley to serve as its global arm, and sees the growth in remote education due to the coronavirus creating considerable opportunities.

“Riiid successfully completed domestic funding amid a slower investment environment due to the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic and has made significant progress in negotiating with overseas financial investors to accelerate global expansion,” said YJ Jang, CEO of Riiid.

“Riiid is already in the process of forming various global partnerships based on its verified AI technology in both academic and commercial markets, and will soon unveil new products and services. We are committed to creating a future for education beyond our imagination through in-depth R&D and commercialisation of technology.”

Investors have seen the potential in AI-assisted education, seeing Riiid as a potentially key player in this space.

“Riiid is establishing a global standard while defining valid technologies and leading researches in the field of AI EdTech,” said Jay Jeon, director at Intervest.

The State of Technology This Week

“At a time when the need for effective remote learning solutions is expanding not only in the education market but also in various industries, the investment was made highly valuing the marketability of Riiid’s proven business model in Santa, excellent talent pool and various global partnerships that are underway based on a scalable technology structure.”


Read more: Startup Jolt raises $14.1m to disrupt MBA education market