Leya AI, a Lithuania-based educational technology company, recently announced a $1.8 million (€1 million) pre-seed fundraising round led by V-Sharp, Inventure, BADideas.fund, and angel investors, marking a significant milestone in its journey to democratize access to personal coaching. With this financing round, the startup aims to strengthen its AI English Tutor and expand its market share.
Leya AI (previously known as Oxus.AI), co-founded in 2020 by Mindaugas Bruzas and Donatas Tamosauskas, aims to provide personal coaching to everyone. The team’s short-term mission is to transform language learning methods by offering an affordable, real-time, personal-speaking AI tutor. Designed to disrupt traditional language learning methods, Leya AI Tutor promises to deliver enjoyable, guided, and practical coaching sessions, making personalized English language education accessible to learners worldwide.
Speaking about the company, Co-founder & CEO of Leya AI, Mindaugas Bruzas, said:
5 years ago, I struggled with my English speaking skills too, I tried various solutions, but nothing helped. That changed when I started only speaking in English for my daily communication. I was talking with my Lithuanian friends, colleagues, and relatives only in English. It was difficult – it took me a year to see the desired results, and it frustrated others. In other words, I experienced the pain of learning English deeply myself.
A fully remote team of seven people designed the solution with professional English teachers to recreate the most engaging and practical classroom activities. Currently, the firm provides many lessons and roleplay scenarios intended to assist students in improving their overall skills, vocabulary, and confidence. The team launched its beta version six months ago. Today, the platform serves 4500 users from over 100 countries, all while being hundreds of times more affordable than traditional tutoring.
Adding further about the platform, Donatas Tamosauskas, Co-founder & CTO of Leya AI, said:
For the last four years, the team of Leya AI has been active in the language and speech technology space, focusing on underserved languages. Leya AI technology has been enabled by recent Generative AI breakthroughs, especially in Large Language Models. However, our years of experience in the language field have given us a background to build something that has not been previously possible – real-time, human-like personalized tutoring for a fraction of the real-life price. The new funds will be used to attract and retain the best talent in Product, Engineering and other roles.
English language skills continue in high demand because they provide access to the rest of the world. There are currently 1.2 billion English learners. However, the majority of new learners need help understanding the language. Reasons include insufficient tutors, a need for more opportunities to practice speaking skills, and, of course, high costs.
Commenting on the fundraising, Matej Zabadal, Managing Partner at V-Sharp Venture Studio, said:
Mindaugas, Donatas, and the rest of the team at Leya AI are an outstanding example of what happens when a deep, personal experience with a problem meets passion, perseverance and the obsession with building a delightful product from a user-first perspective. They are creating an entirely new category in education, “personal coaching”, that will disrupt the existing industry and has the potential to improve a billion lives – and we believe that the ambitious team at Leya AI will be the one to lead this change.