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16 November 2017

Sam Labs computes $6.75m series A

Touchstone Innovations has co-led a $6.75m series A round for edtech developer Sam Labs after it pumped $2.9m into the business in May 2016.

Author: Callum Cyrus, reporter

Sam Labs, a UK-based edtech developer spun out from Imperial College London (ICL) and Royal College of Art, achieved a $6.75m series A close yesterday co-led by commercialisation firm Touchstone Innovations and E15 Ventures.

Founded in 2014, Sam Labs has created a construction and programming kit called Steam that teaches school pupils critical thinking skills through science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

Sam Labs partners government clients such as the city of Helsinki and the United Arab Emirates, as well as Microsoft Education, the education technology arm of software developer Microsoft.

The cash will be used to build additional features for Sam’s edtech suite, to liaise with teaching staff and to keep the product in line with certain education standards.

Sam Labs had received $4.6m in May 2016 in a round led by Imperial Innovations, the subsidiary of Touchstone acting as ICL’s tech transfer office, which contributed $2.9m.

The spinout previously raised crowdfunding of more than $196,000 in 2014 and has participated in the Intel Education Accelerator run by semiconductor manufacturer Intel.

Joachim Horn, founder and chief executive of Sam Labs, said: “As a technology company delivering solutions for teaching Steam and computing, we are thrilled to deepen our research and development efforts to bring new products to the classroom.”

Robert Bahns, director of technology ventures at Touchstone Innovations, added: “We have seen an increased focus from edtech companies on improving education standards in the US and around the world.”

“A proficiency in computer science is something from which all students should benefit, and Sam Labs is allowing for this possibility across the globe.”

Touchstone was bought by fellow commercialisation firm IP Group for approximately £490m in October 2017 and will delist from stock market Aim on December 11.

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