Authoritive, a startup that builds customized learning experiences over messaging technology for experts and creators, has announced that it has raised $5 million in seed funding.
The round was led by Owl Ventures, the largest EdTech venture firm in the world, who will take a board seat, and included Guardian Media Ventures.
This marks the first round of financing for Authoritive which was launched in 2019 by veteran literary manager Christy Fletcher who has worked with a wide array of notable authors, Jacob Lewis who served as an executive at Conde Nast and founded his own content startup that was sold to Penguin Random House, and Gene Cohen, a technical founder with an extensive background in AI and messaging startups including Seated and VoodooVox.
Authoritive allows creators to adapt their expertise to virtually coach people over messaging platforms including SMS, iMessage, WhatsApp, Slack, and MS Teams. Combining audio, short video, and text-based instruction, participants engage with interactive content directly on their phone, or through their company messaging platform. This new kind of learning experience, which combines learning design and push technology, facilitates two-way communication and personalized learning for individuals and teams.
Christy Fletcher, Co-Founder of Authoritive, said,
“I spent years helping creators try to build sustainable business models that supported their entrepreneurial drive but still left them with time to create. I realized there was a huge opportunity to use technology to help them reach their full potential, both in impact and revenue, while still offering their audiences the opportunity to learn directly from them.”
Authoritive’s customers reflect a wide range of consumer-focused and enterprise content—from personal development and investing, food writing and cooking, to business thought leadership and consulting, as well as leaders in the faith space. Current collaborators include Gretchen Rubin, Denise Hamilton, Mark Bittman, Susan Cain, Danielle Town, Claire Shipman & Katty Kay, Tim Tebow, consulting firm Innosight, among others.
Amit A. Patel, Managing Director at Owl Ventures, added,
“Authoritive’s platform brings together snackable and engaging content that offers convenience, personalization, and interactivity. The benefits of message-based learning have long been understood, but it has been difficult for experts and creators to take advantage of this medium. Authoritive finally makes it possible for experts/creators to easily build this type of content and make message-based learning a reality for a global audience.”
The company successfully ran on its revenues for the first few years, but with the seed investment, “We’re excited to build out our team in key areas to increase our capacity to meet current customer demand and support our creator community in the marketing and sales of these products,” according to Co-Founder Jacob Lewis. “We’ll also continue to work on product innovation to deliver exceptional experiences for creators and their audiences.”