Drive Capital has led a $35 million investment in Udacity, an online learning startup bridging the gap between real-world skills, relevant education and employment. In addition to leading the Series C financing, Drive co-founder Mark Kvamme will join the company's Board of Directors. Udacity plans to use the funds to focus on nanodegrees, a new type of credential for students to gain skills recognized by employers around the world. The round includes participation from Bertelsmann in Germany, Recruit in Japan and Valor Capital in Brazil. Cox Enterprises also participated in the financing, as well as Andreessen Horowitz and Charles River Ventures, both of which had previously invested in the company.
Udacity currently has close to 3 million enrollments from 119 countries for its online classes that are built with industry leaders like Google, Facebook, AT&T, Cloudera and MongoDB, among others. Its classes are available anywhere, on any device, and come with personalized coaching and a project to demonstrate mastery of skills. The company last raised $15 million of Series B funding at a valuation of $68 million in 2012; it has raised a total of about $56 million to date.