pr.co, an Amsterdam-based online newsroom company, has announced the acquisition of Pioneer Academy, a PR learning platform helping students to apply a startup mindset to PR through on-demand video courses, masterclasses, workbooks, and guides. However, the firm did not disclose the financial details of the deal.
With this acquisition, pr.co will further work on making PR accessible to all organizations, regardless of budget and size. It will also expand the platform beyond software, equipping marketers and communications professionals to generate brand awareness through great PR campaigns.
Founded in 2021 by Bianca Zwart, Pioneer Academy gives the knowledge and tools to generate leads and convert them through the power of the press. The platform offers everything one needs to get their business in the media all in one place at a fraction of the cost.
Speaking about the acquisition, Founder of Pioneer Academy, Bianca Zwart, said:
Not all agencies are geared for startup PR. Startups need a data-driven PR strategy that works at a fast pace and on a lean budget. Pioneer Academy gives them the tools and knowledge to grow their startup in the media in a way that works for them. We’re super excited to join forces with pr.co and are confident they will take the platform to the next level.
Post the deal, pr.co will focus on growing Pioneer Academy’s current student base and expanding its content. Together with PR experts, they will develop courses to cover the entire spectrum of PR, from investor relations to media relations, corporate communications and brand journalism.
pr.co, co-founded by Stefan Fountain, Jeroen Bos and Gilberto Arredondo, builds (corporate) websites and software for the world’s fastest-growing companies, including Just Eat Takeaway, WeTransfer, Remote, Dolby, and Polaroid. The company takes the spin out of public relations by equipping organizations with the right software, knowledge and partners to communicate transparently and build relationships based on trust, as consumers increasingly expect companies to operate ethically. It helps organizations publish news, manage their international PR strategy, manage their contacts, do outreach, and stream events online.
Adding about the deal, Chief Executive Officer of pr.co, Jeroen Bos, said:
We believe that public relations should be at the core of every organization. Consumers demand more ethical behaviour, transparency, and sustainability from the brands in which they invest their time and money. As a result, public relations has become an essential tool for growth in every industry and organization, regardless of size. With this acquisition, pr.co will continue empowering PR professionals to showcase their values in action.
Since its inception in 2013, pr.co has published hundreds of blogs, guides, templates, and the PR magazine Unfold. In addition, it has organized free meetups and breakfasts for local PR communities. All with one goal—to encourage sharing knowledge within the community so that more organizations can leverage the power of PR. It has donated its services to dozens of NGOs, including the Dutch National Food Bank Organization, the Dutch Council for Refugees, and ReNature.
The Dutch startup wants to create a workplace where everyone feels like they belong, no matter who they are. It has changed its recruitment processes to remove as much human bias as possible. The platform focuses on helping its customers be transparent about their organization and its global impact. Its beautifully designed online newsrooms, intuitive PR software, and expertise help our customers to generate more press coverage and build meaningful relationships with journalists, investors, customers and other stakeholders.
In the coming weeks, pr.co will develop a new learning platform to expand Pioneer Academy’s courses. This new platform will be available to the public in early April. To get a sneak peek at Pioneer Academy, sign up for the 30-day PR challenge and rocket launch your PR in 30 days of short, actionable lessons.
In 2017, pr.co had raised €400k in seed funding from a group of angels led by Brian Reaves and publishing industry expert Woodwing Ventures.