Mexico-based Startup Platzi is Teaching Professional Skills to Latin America One Subscriber at a Time - How This Can Increase Employment Opportunities for Latinos
Gone are the days when people are forced to attend time-consuming classes and endure physical training to acquire professional skills. With continued innovation in the digital age, it's no wonder education platforms are also stepping up their game.
Online learning services -- a good number of which are MOOCs -- are examples of this. With just few clicks on the Internet, one gets the opportunity to become smarter at his own convenience, right in the comforts of home.
What is Platzi?
Platzi Inc., an online learning service based in Mexico City, has raised $2.1 million in seed funding for its new education technology startup. It targets people interested to study professional skills courses in English and Spanish.
Platzi aims to help people who have no access to high-bandwidth Internet to improve skills needed to create their own apps, businesses and websites. Platzi's subscriptions cost $29 a month, or $299 annually, and people can choose over the company's live and on-demand video courses. On top of these professional tech skills, Platzi also teaches design, finance and marketing.
Co-founder Freddy Vega explained that the company's services can be accessed through proprietary compression technology despite having limited and low bandwidth Internet connection.
"We learned what Netlix learned, which is that when you don't have a lot of motion in a video, you can compress it and transcode it so it plays well even on a 1 megabits per second network," Vega told the Wall Street Journal.
Other companies have invested in Platzi's endeavor, such as 500 Startups, Omidyar, Nazca Ventures, Amasia Ventures and Y Combinator.
LatAm Entrepreneurs are Interested Too
Vega said that his company's partnership with YC opened plenty of doors for Platzi, the Next Web reported.
YC partner Kat Mañalac told the Next Web via an email that the company already has Latin American entrepreneurs involved, but they wish to attract more of them.
Platzi has at least one Hispanic founder, signifying diversity. According to Vega, "YC doesn't care where you come from, or whether English is your native language. It's not about where you are from, it's about what you can create," the news outlet added.
Platzi's methods are in accordance with people's evolving thirst for knowledge.
"The way we learn has changed dramatically over the last few years. People never stop learning and are constantly looking for 'knowledge upgrades.' In addition, they aren't looking for academic knowledge; they want to learn from the best professional in their industry," Vega shared.
Platzi wants to dip its feet into mobile apps to make learning even more flexible for people. As of this moment, 35 percent of its students are updated on Platzi classes from their mobile devices, specifically tablets.
These apps will be created by Platzi's in-house staff, which comprises 25 employees in Colombia and four in Mexico. Platzi is also scouting for native English speakers and more senior staffers for the expansion of its three-member team in the United States.
The U.S. labor market has improved earlier this year, with more than 40,000 Latinos benefiting from new jobs. As new educational methods emerge, learning becomes more accessible, making the future much more promising to the digital generation.