Capti, an education technology startup that provides text simplification technology that helps students improve their vocabulary and reading comprehension, has received a $1 million funding from the National Science Foundation.
The Buffalo-based EdTech startup was awarded a Small Business Innovation Research Grant to conduct research and development on accessible reading for students, according to a report by The Buffalo News.
The report said, quoting Capti’s CEO Yevgen Borodin, the foundation’s grant will fund Capti’s development of technology that automatically simplifies texts to match students’ reading levels.
“The funding is restricted to R&D, so we are seeking additional capital to grow our business. The grant has already attracted interest from several investors, and we also hope it will help us win 43North,” Borodin said, referring to the local business competition held annually that awards startup firms funding in an effort to grow and retain businesses in Buffalo.
According to Borodin, with so many students reading below grade level, Capti’s text simplification technology will help struggling readers improve their vocabulary and reading comprehension.
Commenting on the funding, Andrea Belz, director of the National Science Foundation’s Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships, said, “The foundation is proud to support the technology of the future by thinking beyond incremental developments and funding the most creative, impactful ideas across all markets and areas of science and engineering. With the support of our research funds, any deep technology startup or small business can guide basic science into meaningful solutions that address tremendous needs.”
According to the report, Capti competed in the 2018 and 2019 43North business plan competitions but didn’t win prize money. The startup relocated to Buffalo from Long Island in 2019, before that year’s 43North competition. Capti currently has four locally-based employees and one employee working remotely. The startup’s business is based at the University at Buffalo’s Downtown Gateway.