Piazza, a social learning network for students and instructors has secured $6 million in Series A funding from Bessemer Venture Partners. Ethan Kurzweil of Bessemer recently joined Piazza’s board of directors. Seed investors Kapor Capital and Felicis Ventures also participated in the round. Piazza says it plans to use the money for research and development, and expanding its outreach efforts.
The founder and CEO of Piazza is Pooja Sankar, a former Computer Science student from IIT Kharagpur (India), and University of Maryland. Ms. Sankar also worked at Oracle, Kosmix and Facebook as software developer. The investment caps a year of growth for the company, which emerged from private beta in January and now enrolls more than 100,000 students at hundreds of schools worldwide, including 109 of the top 250 colleges in the United States. Over half of Stanford signed up in two terms, and half of MIT in one term.
Pooja Sankar (Founder and CEO, Piazza): Piazza is designed to connect students, TAs, and professors so every student can get help when she needs it — even at 2AM.
Piazza is a free online gathering place where students can ask and answer questions 24/7 under the guidance of their instructors. Collaboration occurs in real time. Students who sign on to Piazza stay logged in for an average of four hours a day. Mobile clients for iOS and Android are also available.