Zen Educate raises $37 million and acquires Aquinas Education as it seeks to address teacher shortage


Zen Educate, an online marketplace that connects schools with teachers, has raised $37 million in a Series B round of funding.

The increases come amid a growing teacher shortage crisis on both sides, with a recent report from the ADP Research Institute saying the global pandemic has exacerbated the existing supply/demand imbalance due to “stagnant wages and stressful work environments.” .

Founded in London in 2017, Zen Educate replaces traditional third-party recruitment agencies that often use analog workflows and charge exorbitant fees. Zen Educate digitalizes everything through a self-service platform, removing expensive middlemen from the equation in the process. Through the platform, teachers and schools create profiles and Zen Educate can automatically match the two entities based on their compatibility – it uses data such as proximity, skills, experience among other preferences.

Schools can use Zen Educate for full-time roles, but teachers can also use it to more easily find temporary or part-time roles that fit around their lives.

“Like all sectors, teachers are looking for more flexibility in their work, and thus, there is a greater need for flexible working solutions like Zen Educate in education,” Slava Kramerman, co-founder and CEO of Zen Educate, told TechCrunch. “

Furthermore, Zen Educate also promises higher salaries, given that it takes lower cuts than existing agencies

“The average current industry rate is between 35-38%,” Kramerman said. “We are a little more than half of it. As a result, teachers earn more and schools save money.”

Zen Educate App
Image Credit: Zen Educate


Zen Educate raised a $21 million Series A round in late 2022 as it looks to expand into the US market after a soft-launch in Minneapolis. Today, the company operates in 11 areas of England as well as four additional states – Texas, Colorado, California and Arizona. And more than 15% of its 300 workforce is now based in the US

“From the Minneapolis soft-launch, we are now the second-largest provider in the state,” Kramerman said. “We are based in five states and we are working with nine of the top 200 largest school districts in America”

Kramerman also said its technology-based approach has helped it adapt to the different regulatory environment in the U.S.

“Licensing is state-specific, whereas England and Wales have a standardized national standard,” Kramerman said. “We’re able to use our credentialing technology to adapt and quickly implement across states, whereas most traditional staffing companies struggle with this.”

With another $37 million in the bank, the company said it plans to expand into more markets in the US and UK and launch new software for school administrators, including adding its school workforce management software that supports credentialing, Packs tools for compliance and. Absence Management.

In addition, Zen Educate is also growing its resources through acquisitions, and today announced its second acquisition with the purchase of teacher staffing agency Aquinas Education. The company said it intends to complete several more acquisitions in both the US and UK

Notably, Aquinas Education counts former professional football player turned TV presenter Jermaine Jenas as one of its owners, and following this acquisition Jenas has now joined Zen Educate as a brand ambassador.

Zen Educate’s Series B round was led by Round2 Capital, with participation from Adjuvo, BrightEye Ventures, FJ Labs, Ascension Ventures, and multiple angels.


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