Komodo, a New Zealand-based student well-being platform, has raised NZ$1.8 million (about $1.26 million) in seed funding led by Folklore Ventures, with participation from Icehouse Ventures and Flying Fox Ventures.
The round also witnessed participation from individual investors including employee engagement platform Culture Amp co-founder Rod Hamilton, Chloe Hamman, Culture Amp’s director of people science, leaders from learning platform Education Perfect, and Kristi Grant, the director of people experience at Auror.
The company will use the funding to further develop its platform and services, invite more psychologists to the team and fuel its expansion into schools in New Zealand and Australia, an opportune moment when well-being support is critical to students as their families and schools navigate the ongoing pandemic.
Founded in 2018 by Chris Bacon, Jack Wood, and Matt Goodson, Komodo aims to empower staff with a well-being management strategy so students can thrive. The platform provides a software solution using student data, along with surveys developed by psychologists, to identify individuals who may be at risk and help them tackle common issues such as cyberbullying, harassment, anxiety, and depression, as early as possible.
Komodo is designed to give students the opportunity and the language to talk about their own mental health and wellbeing at a young age. It’s proactive and preventative, helping both teachers and students get ahead of any wellbeing issues before they spiral out of control.
Commenting on the funding, Founder and CEO of Komodo Chris Bacon said,
“Today’s students face many unprecedented risks to their well-being, amplified by an ongoing pandemic that is sure to cause long-lasting effects on their behavior and well-being if we do not act. This round of funding positions us to expand our reach to more students and to equip more schools with the tools needed to move from intervention to prevention.”
Komodo enables senior leadership to build the best wellbeing strategies, measure their effectiveness and create the best possible environment for students.
Folklore Ventures investor Dan Fleming said,
“The platform gives every student a voice when they need it most and empowers staff to proactively approach well-being management, a need that is unfortunately exacerbated by the pandemic.”
Komodo, which completed Startmate’s Accelerator Summer 21 cohort, currently works with a number of schools and partners across New Zealand and Australia, including Marist College Ashgrove (Queensland), St Andrew’s College (Christchurch), the Australian Boarding Schools Association (ABSA), Independent Schools of New Zealand, and the Council of British International Schools.
With the fresh capital, Komodo also plans to focus on product development, solving additional problems, and working on improving the impact the business will have.