07 Jul 2021 | 12.59 pm
$20m Funding For College Applications Platform
Unibuddy is used by ten Irish universities
07 Jul 2021 | 12.59 pm
Ten Irish universities will benefit from the success of Unibuddy in raising €17m in a Series B funding round that will help expansion for the peer-to-peer university recruitment platform.
Secondary school graduates and other thinking of attending university use the Unibuddy platform check out colleges and course, with the added benefit of chatting online with existing students and staff about their queries.
Popular discussions on the platform centre around fitting in, study course, employability on graduation, student life, admissions requirements, and testing criteria. In 2020, the number of messages sent by college applicants on the platform quadrupled compared to 2019.
Ireland is one of Unibuddy’s top ten markets, with university partners including Maynooth University, Dublin City University and RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences.
A record 84,000 students will apply for college placements for the coming academic year. Those using Unibuddy are likely to spend an average of 10 minutes chatting with Unibuddy ambassadors, curious about the application process as well as how challenging the coursework is.
Prospective students who want to study in Ireland are most interested in medicine, dentistry and engineering, according to the company.
Chief executive Diego Fanara said: “By 2025 our goal is to partner with institutions to empower 10 million students to progress on their higher education journey. We will triple the size of our engineering team, expand our product suite and, with it, our role in the higher education journey from selecting a programme, to on-boarding to post-graduation.”
The Series B round was led by Highland Europe with additional participation from StrideVC. Unibuddy has now raised $32m since its inception in 2017.
Highland Europe partner Fergal Mullen added: “We know from many university administrators that Unibuddy delivers significant benefits by enabling them to target suitable student applicants more effectively and to improve yield on offers made. We also noted that Unibuddy positively impacts first-year retention, which is a huge win for universities.”
Maynooth University admissions office executive Emma Shine commented: “Since using Unibuddy our students have had over 3,000 conversations with potential applicants.”
According to Fanara, Unibuddy has helped over 770,000 applicants make their higher education decisions and now has 117 staff in New York, London, Bangalore and Singapore.
Photo: Unibuddy founders Diego Fanara (left) and Kimeshan Naidoo