Lambda School secures $30m financing for income share agreement model

US-based online coding school Lambda has closed a $30-million Series B funding round led by Bedrock Capital, according to a Medium post by the investor.

The round was joined by existing backer GV, Vy Capital, GGV Capital, Y Combinator, actor-investor Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures and Coinbase CTO Balaji Srinivasan, among others. Lambda is said to be valued at $150 million after the investment.

It earlier secured a $14-million Series A funding in October 2018 led by GV (formerly Google Ventures) with participation from Stripe.

Founded in 2017, the San Francisco-headquartered company offers 30-week online courses on computer and data science, iOS development, Android development and UX design. Its model is a unique alternative for education as no upfront tuition is required. Students only have to pay back 17 per cent of their income for two years if they secure a job that pays more than $50,000 a year.

However, the company puts a cap at $30,000 for a graduate’s payment.

Bedrock commented that Lambda will build “an unstoppable company unlike any the world has seen”. Lambda is targeting to solve the whopping $1.4-trillion student loan issue through Income Share Agreement (ISA), an education financing structure that the US legalised in 2014.

Bedrock called Lambda an “income accelerator”, saying: “Since we began getting to know Lambda School over the summer, we’ve gained high conviction that founders Austen Allred, Ben Nelson, and the fast growing Lambda team have the one-of-a-kind wherewithal to pull it all off.”

The startup has enrolled more than 1,000 students and claims that its recent graduates have reported an average post-programme annual income of $85,000.

Since its Series A investment, Lambda has been expanding its course offerings and employer network. The firm said on its website that employers include top tech giants like Google, Amazon, Uber, Stripe and Cognizant.

Bedrock was co-founded by Geoff Lewis, a former partner at Founders Fund that invested in Lyft, in 2017.

The firm closed its debut fund at its $127-million hard cap and focuses on Series A, B and C investments. Its current portfolio includes Cameo, Unsplash, RigUp and The Athletic, in addition to Lambda.

Recently, African Leadership University, which has operations in Mauritius and Rwanda, also closed a $30-million funding round. The school has now raised a total of $80 million, of which $10 million has been allocated for its student financing programme similar to the ISA model.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.