“Investing in innovation is central to our mission of helping people achieve education and workplace success,” said Marten Roorda, ACT chief executive officer. “We are inspired by both the impact of technology and a growing community of entrepreneurs working to address some of our most vexing challenges across the student life cycle. Our investment with New Markets is designed to support businesses that are making an impact by allowing them to invest in critical efficacy research and to attract strong teams needed to scale.”
With ACT’s support, the 10-year fund will invest in education companies with proven models of success across the early childhood, K-12 and postsecondary education landscape. The fund also intends to back emerging approaches to workforce development, hiring and training at a time when skills and equity gaps challenge employers.
“There is an urgent need for investments into new educational models with proven efficacy that address the nation’s achievement and skills gaps,” said Mark Grovic, general partner and founder of New Markets Venture Partners. “Given ACT’s long history of leadership and innovation in assessment and college and career readiness, New Markets is excited to work with them to identify and support the nation’s best education entrepreneurs working to remove the obstacles that prevent students from reaching their full potential. ACT will be a great partner both for us and for our portfolio companies.”
ACT will be the largest strategic investor in the new fund, which recently named former Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Deputy Director