Kwiziq is an A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) language coach that helps people learn a second language. Kwiziq learns what students know, don’t know and have mis-learned, building and maintaining “brainmaps” of their knowledge and confidence. Analysing these, it can give them personalised lessons, recommendations and practice exercises perfectly suited to their needs, helping them to perfect their language skills faster than ever. Co-founders have self-funded from first concept all the way to a revenue-generating first version in French. We’ve grown entirely organically with no marketing budget, which we think proves both that the concept works and addresses a real need in a huge market. We believe now is the perfect time to raise money so that we can accelerate R&D and begin expanding our products and supported languages.
Every year, millions of people start to learn a new language online, but there are many more worldwide who already speak a second language but do not consider themselves to be proficient who don’t want to start from scratch. In Europe, it’s around one in three people. We believe there is very little software serving this section of the market well. In our experience online courses commonly don’t know what individuals need to learn, revisit or may have mislearned. Intermediate students are presented with far too much choice with no clear idea what they need to do to make progress, which can be painful and frustrating.
Co-founders, Gareth and Simon, know this all too well: between us we’ve studied French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Arabic and Indonesian. Our products are born from first-hand experience of the difficulties students face when going online to improve their skills beyond the beginner level.
Courses and software tend to be designed as fixed, one-size-fits-all structures which is fine for beginners who all have the same knowledge (i.e. nothing) but we do not feel that they can suit the needs of intermediate students who have all learned completely different things. The reality of learning a language is that, over years, students learn from a large number of sources: CDs, books, courses, tutors, holidays, apps, the internet, etc and so any effective system has to acknowledge this.
We have designed Kwiziq, therefore, to work with students with any educational background but also to work withteachers, tutors and schools too. Kwiziq is not intended to replace human teachers, but instead to augment the process of teaching a language, helping to reduce the burden of preparation and marking, freeing teachers to focus on what they do and enjoy best.
Kwiziq aims to give online educators powerful new ways to learn about and engage with their students and the ability to monetise what they already do.
As a platform, it makes it easy to create fun, mobile learning games and apps, all of which can benefit from the Kwiziq A.I. to serve highly-relevant content and keep the core up-to-date with student progress. This has the potential to open up multiple new revenue streams.
We started working on the Kwiziq prototype in secret a few years before incorporating the company formally in May 2012. Following the Lean methodology we launched an experimental minimum viable product which we have iterated and improved all the way to a subscription-based, revenue-generating product in French. We have funded the company personally, taking no salaries to date. As technologists, and since we have written the majority of the code ourselves, we’ve been able to keep R&D costs to a minimum.