Singapore edtech firm Nas Academy bags $11m Series A led by Lightspeed Ventures

Photo: Tran Mau Tri Tam / Unsplash.com

Online education platform Nas Academy has closed a $11 million Series A round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners.

TechAviv Founder Partners, 500 Startups, Graph Ventures, Fresh.fund, and Metapurse, as well as individual investors like ex-Coinbase chief technology officer Balaji Srinivasan, Coinbase president Emilie Choi, and Oyo CEO Ritesh Agrawal participated in the round.

“This is the first time in five years that we [are taking] VC money because this is the first time we are building technology products,” said founder Nuseir Yassin, who launched the platform in 2020, in a press release.

Yassin is widely known as a video blogger and influencer whose Nas Daily social media account boasts tens of millions of followers across platforms.

The academy will allow content creators to create new courses and market them to students who may want to learn from them.

Yassin said he hopes that the online learning platform can help address the concerns, such as scams and half-baked offerings, that consumers face when signing up for online courses. “This market needs to have some trusted brands and quality assurances,” he said, in a press statement.

Since its inception, Nas Academy has hosted 250 cohorts of full courses covering topics such as storytelling, growing social media presence, building a camera presence, and so on.

“New media is increasingly dominated by creators and Nuseir and team, having been successful creators themselves, are uniquely positioned to enable creators to become educators to teach and monetise their respective crafts,” said Lightspeed Venture Partners’ Akshay Bhushan.

The creator economy has seen increasing investor interest such as via the $155 million funding round led by Tiger Global into creator platform Patreon in April, which subsequently raised Patreon’s valuation to $4 billion.

Yassin sees a massive opportunity in not only facilitating closer relationships between creators and fans but also serving as a learning platform for budding creators.

In December last year, Nas Academy had partnered with Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant Grab to roll out a programme to identify and groom 100 budding content creators across Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

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.