HEI Schools approach based on the latest research in education
The close relationship that HEI Schools and the company’s founders enjoy with the University of Helsinki enhances the company’s credibility in its growth, and reinforces continuous development of its pedagogic methods and quality.
“Compared to other international EdTech players, we have in-depth expertise and a knowledge-based understanding of how children learn and develop, and how we can best support them in their learning. Another of our competitive edges is our holistic design. A detailed plan aimed at maximum effectiveness encompasses not only the premises and brand but also customer experience, the methods used by learning centre staff, and teacher training,” Kokko points out.
“It was quite a challenging year for us because the COVID-19 pandemic forced us to take our digital concept to market much earlier than we’d originally planned. Nevertheless, it was received enthusiastically, and it looked pretty certain that we’d raise the financing to expand internationally,” Kokko explains.
What it is: HEI Schools, a Finnish EdTech startup established in 2015, with 14 early childhood education centres applying its model in eight countries, soon to be followed by 16 more in another four countries.
Founders: Pilvi Torsti, Lasse Lipponen, Milla Kokko, Anne Rusanen and the University of Helsinki.
Products: Licensing and SaaS for Finnish model of childhood education to operators of local learning centres.
Net sales: €1.3 million in 2020.
Personnel: 20 people in Helsinki in 2020.
Investors: Most recent investment round raised €2 million in 2021, investors Practica Capital and Tesi.
Who she is: Co-founder of HEI Schools and the company’s CEO since 2017.
Experience: Concept and brand strategies for Finnish and international companies.
Why HEI Schools:”I was interested in building an entirely new brand and concept from scratch, and I saw that HEI Schools has something valuable to offer. Now I’ve been involved longer, I understand more clearly that if you want to change the world there’s no better place to start than children’s education. I want to build a good business, but also to do something meaningful and make the world a better place.”