Skoogmusic, which makes an interactive cube to help children learn about and play music, has completed its largest funding round to date, with £560,000 secured from Scottish Investment Bank, Old College Capital, and a number of private investors.
The inventors of the Skoog, which is already sold in Apple stores worldwide, will use the investment to fund an international sales and marketing drive following deals with two new global distribution partners: Tech Data in Europe and Ingram Micro in the US. The new investment means that Skoogmusic has raised a total of £2 million to date.
As the company scales up its operation, company co-founder Dr Benjaman Schögler will step into the role of CEO, with tech industry stalwart Andy Gordon established as Chairman. One of the round’s investors, seasoned private equity investor Paul Murray, will join the company as a Non-Executive Director.
Dr Schögler said: “This is another hugely exciting step for Skoog. The investment enables us to work with Apple and partners like Ingram Micro and TechData to reach more children in more countries around the world. It’s not what you play that’s important but it is crucial that you do play. And this investment means more play and more music for everyone.”
The business, which was spun out of the University of Edinburgh in 2009 with the help of Edinburgh Innovations, plans to extend the Skoog product family, developing and launching new entry level hardware in 2018 so that more people can access Skoogmusic technology. The company will continue to develop its apps across coding, sampling and creative music making, translating them into eight languages for international markets.
Andrea Young, Fund Manager at Old College Capital, said: “We are very proud to support the ongoing global success of Skoogmusic, a business that was founded and nurtured in its early days right here at the University of Edinburgh. We wish the team and their pioneering product every success for this exciting next phase of the journey.”
Skoog currently retails in Apple stores as part of the tech giant’s innovative education programmes. This includes the multi-sensory Apple Field Trips – creative learning workshops hosted for teachers and students in stores around the world; and the pioneering Apple Distinguished Educators, who showcase how technology can transform education to global audiences.
Skoog is also one of the devices connected to Apple’s educational coding app Swift Playgrounds, offering an exciting way to learn to code using robots, drones and Skoog.
The business has also been successful on the pioneering tech crowdfunding site Indiegogo, where it raised more than £50,000 in presales for Skoog 2.0.
Kerry Sharp, director of the Scottish Investment Bank added: “It’s great to see the Skoog product being sold internationally and being recognised as a truly innovative musical instrument. This is a key sector for the Scottish economy and we look forward to helping the company achieve its growth ambitions.”