How does an investment arise? Concrete figures are hard to find, but they often turn out to be founders and financing means know each other from before. From a previous position, a previous company or a mutual acquaintance. The contact has been there all these years. Sometimes intimately, sometimes only through LinkedIn. This is how the latest agreement between Lumo Labs and Metacampus came about.
‘The founder of that company is Pere Pérez Nonou’, says Andy Lürling of Lumo Labs. “We’ve known each other for about five years now. He had a company in Barcelona at the time and was working with a startup that we invested in. I’ve been following him ever since. When I was in Barcelona, we always visited each other . He sold his company to Media Pro in 2020 and three quarter of an hour ago approached me for a new project.’
That project is Metacampus, an edtech platform still in the MVP phase. The company wants to prepare people for jobs in web 3.0. This is the domain of virtual reality, augmented reality, NFTs, blockchain and the metaverse.
This training is based on gamified learning. Game mechanics such as scores, levels and time pressure have been added to the platform. It is the more scalable part of the business model. In addition, Metacampus is engaged by universities and companies for tailored education.
‘Metacampus makes people aware of the world we are moving to. This is a world that is becoming increasingly digital and virtual. For professionals who want to develop the right skills for this, the platform offers a number of training courses.’
Currently, you can only follow it as a class so that the company can collect as much feedback as possible. The online rollout will follow within a year, says Lürling.
The education courses are modules that universities and colleges do not yet have access to in their curriculum. Blockchain developer just to name a random example. Or NFT engineer. To develop such a non-fungible token, you need not only to be graphically savvy, but also to know something about software. According to Lürling, this combination of skills is not yet offered on mainstream courses.
Creating a new degree can easily take the universities a few years. Metacampus says it can achieve that speed thanks to the learning blocks built according to a modular design. Lürling: ‘In this way, we can easily link them together and react quickly to new developments in the virtual economy.’
Many roles in the virtual economy are ideal for MBO students, part-timers and returnees
He adds that replacing universities is definitely not the aim of the platform. ‘See this more as an addition to the existing offer.’
In addition, Metacampus does not only want to focus on higher education. ‘Many roles in the new virtual economy are particularly suitable for MBO students, part-timers and returnees. For example, think about arranging and structuring datasets. In addition, the platform also focuses on e.g. brand managers and marketers who want to increase their knowledge of web 3.0.’
Lumo Labs therefore sees value in it. Together with a group of international angel investors, they are investing 1.5 million euros in the Spanish edtech platform in this first round. It is as said under construction and there is still a long way to go for product-market fit. Many professional investors do not yet venture into startups at this early stage. Lumo Labs does this on purpose.
‘This is our eleventh participation. And all eleven times it was a seed and seed. This is largely due to our own background. We are a network of former entrepreneurs and have experienced this early phase ourselves. With our knowledge and partners, we can guide startups to the next phase. Our strategy is therefore very deliberately not one in ten, we prefer to guide all startups to the next phase.’
The current model of Metacampus is based on subscription. For people with less financial means, the platform offers opportunities for a scholarship. The company now has teams in the UK, USA, Australia and the Netherlands. The second training center may be in Eindhoven. Those plans are not yet concrete, but the High Tech Campus has already shown interest.