Singapore-headquartered EdTech startup Creative Galileo announced on Tuesday it has raised $2.5 million in a round led by Kalaari Capital.

The funds will be used for scaling, product development and enhancement, creating new engaging content, forging partnerships with leading animation houses, and hiring talent, the company said in a statement.

Other investors include prominent angel investors, such as Harish Bahl (Founder & Chairman, Smile Group), Shashin Shah (Managing Partner, Think Investments), Jinesh Patel (Partner, Integra Partners), Atul Nishar (Founder & Chairman, Hexaware Technologies Limited), Ashwin Puri (MD Headspin, MD APAC Facebook) and Giridhar Malpani (investor in BrightChamps, FrontRow, Bimaplan and others).

“We envision providing millions of children in emerging markets in Southeast Asia with access to high-quality content for learning in their early years to provide a robust educational foundation, while also keeping the process fun. Alongside enhancing our app by adding more kids’ characters and region-specific languages, the funding helps us onboard talent and enter new markets. This will propel our efforts to create more personalized, inclusive, and relatable content that helps with the early development of children,” Creative Galileo Founder Prerna A. Jhunjhunwala said.

Creative Galileo focuses on the six learning domains–numeracy, language, arts and aesthetics, social and emotional learning, motor skills, and discovery of the world–via narrative videos, gamification, and personalized learning journeys. Since its launch in 2020, Creative Galileo’s app has achieved more than four million downloads and over half a million active users.

The proof-of-concept of Creative Galileo’s proprietary ‘Kids Early Learning App’ was built during the escalation of the COVID-19 pandemic–garnering over a million downloads at no customer acquisition cost soon afterward. The company has also become the first portfolio company of CXXO, a Kalaari Capital initiative championing the next generation of women founder-CEOs to promote inclusive growth.

Southeast Asia is home to 700 million people, of which 26 percent fall within the school-attending age group, the company noted. However, access to quality education is still often limited and unevenly spread across the region, a gap primarily attributed to the region’s large rural population, often inadequate infrastructure, and a lack of trained educators and funding. Given Southeast Asia’s boom in internet usage–driven by the region’s 400 million internet users and the surge in usage of digital products and service–Creative Galileo said it seeks to fill this gap via its e-learning app.

Creative Galileo’s immediate expansion plans will focus on scaling up in emerging markets within Southeast Asia, where it will integrate local languages from the region, such as Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia, into the app. The company intends to make its offerings more accessible to a larger population while retaining the app’s user experience.

Apart from the Indian subcontinent, the app is also gaining traction in international markets, with 10 percent downloads recorded from Nepal, Bangladesh, UAE, USA, and other countries.

Over the next 12 to 14 months, Creative Galileo aims to achieve ten million downloads across all markets. The company has also partnered with leading industry players and studios for kids’ content such as Big Animation, Toonz Animation, Amar Chitra Katha, Shemaroo, and Periwinkle to continue providing quality content, gamification, and interactive learning journeys.

Pakistan EdTech startup Maqsad raises $2.1M pre-Seed funding led by Indus Valley Capital