TakeLessons said it raised $6 million in a funding round led by Crosslink Capital and joined by other investors, including SofTech VC and several angels. Crosslink partner Eric Chin will join the board of the San Diego company that offers a music lessons service and which was founded by entrepreneur and musician Steven Cox.
TAKELESSONS RAISES $6 MILLION VENTURE ROUND LED BY CROSSLINK CAPITAL
Full-Service Music and Voice Lessons Provider Leverages Internet to Unite Students and Music Teachers
San Diego, August 3, 2011 – TakeLessons, a full-service music and voice lessons provider offering private lessons in over 2,800 cities across the U.S., today announced that it has raised $6 million in funding led by Crosslink Capital, with other investors including SofTech VC and other prominent angel investors. Founded in 2006 by Internet entrepreneur and avid musician Steven Cox, San Diego-based TakeLessons helps music students connect with a Certified TakeLessons™ instructor that most precisely fit their needs regardless of age or skill level. Eric Chin, partner at Crosslink Capital, will join the Board of Directors as part of the transaction.
“TakeLessons was founded out of a personal experience. A friend was searching for a guitar teacher for her 7-year old daughter and didn’t know where to look. An Internet search turned up a list of teachers, but no way to compare them or to see if they were experienced, professional, and safe to come into her home,” noted TakeLessons founder and CEO, Steven Cox. “That’s when I realized there was an opportunity to use the Internet to establish a national brand that would stand behind the customer, offer a safe, exceptional service, and help artists make a living doing what they love.”
Scheduling and payment is handled by the TakeLessons platform, which then pays the teachers, letting both students and teachers concentrate on the lessons, while the company handles the administrative functions.
“The moment we heard about TakeLessons we were intrigued by its concept,” said Eric Chin, partner at Crosslink Capital. “Our research convinced us this was a business idea and model that has almost unlimited potential in the world of music and well beyond. Meeting Steven and his team sealed the deal for us. They’re as passionate about this business and its future as it gets. We’re looking forward to working with them to grow this brand.”
TakeLessons currently offers students access to a roster of teachers in 35 music classes, including voice lessons, piano, drum, guitar, singing, and saxophone. The company also offers courses in less common instruments, such as harp, mandolin, ukulele, harmonica and Flamenco guitar, as well as DJ lessons, music recording workshops, songwriting, speaking voice and music performance.
TakeLessons has a meticulous, multi-step screening process for its teachers. Fewer than eight percent of teaching applicants make it through the selection process and receive the Certified TakeLessons™ Instructor designation. Students are asked for feedback after each lesson, and teachers that continually receive mediocre or poor report cards are dropped from the lineup.
TakeLessons recently partnered with electronics and technology giant, Best Buy, to offer music lessons inside their stores. As of June, TakeLessons teaches in over 50 Best Buy stores nationwide, with more stores to be announced in the fall.
Founded in 2006 to help people discover their creativity and pursue their passions, TakeLessons is America’s leading full-service music and voice lessons provider. With lessons taught by Certified TakeLessons™ instructors in thousands of cities across the US, TakeLessons makes it easy for students to start living their dreams through music. TakeLessons also offers turnkey music programs for schools, government agencies, and community centers, as well as at-work lessons programs for corporate clients and their employees. Visit the company at http://takelessons.com.
About Crosslink Capital
Crosslink Capital is a leading stage-independent venture capital and growth equity firm with over $2 billion in assets. Crosslink, which traces its roots back to 1989, was among the first and largest investment firms in the U.S. to integrate public and private growth/technology investing in three families of funds: venture capital funds, long/short hedge funds and a unique hybrid crossover fund. This strategy allows Crosslink to partner with its portfolio companies on a long-term basis. With more than 20 years behind it, Crosslink Capital has invested in over 100 private equity portfolio companies, at the early, mid, and late stages including Pandora (NYSE: P), Ancestry.com (NASDAQ: ACOM), Omniture (acquired by Adobe Systems), Equinix (NASDAQ:EQIX), Virage Logic (NASDAQ: VIRL), Carbonite, BlueArc, Force10, Intematix, SeaMicro, and Yipes (acquired by Reliance Communications). For more information on Crosslink, visit http://www.crosslinkcapital.com