StudyFree, which connects students to international educational opportunities via a community-driven B2C SaaS model, has raised an initial $3 million investment round led by I2BF Global Ventures, TMT Investments and Techstars. Also participating in the exhibition was Mikita Mikado, CEO of PandaDoc and former Director of Products at Google, Andrey Doronshev. StudyFree has now received a total of $3.6 million in funding. The new funds will be used to attract new members to the community, expand into new markets, marketing and develop platforms.
Founded in November 2018, StudyFree helps students and alumni to enter universities and graduate schools internationally, by listing scholarships and grants. It claims that international students using its platform have now received $10.3 million in scholarships and grants to study at universities across the US, Canada, Europe and Asia. It offers over 300,000 different degree programs with scholarships, with a user base of 90,000 students.
Dasha Krushkina, CEO and Founder of StudyFree said: “As someone who was born in a small town, but has managed to study internationally, I know better than anyone how important it is for everyone in the world to have this opportunity. We appreciate that the international education abroad market is 15 million students annually.
StudyFree’s main competitors are ApplyBoard (unicorns) and traditional consulting agencies, but unlike the latter, StudyFree benefits from its independent community of students with study abroad experience who act as mentors and help new users with registration. These alumni, who have a strong desire to “give back,” can host community events and network with these new students. The service then generates revenue through a subscription model.
Mikita Mikado, CEO of PandaDoc, said: “StudyFree has become a leading expert on international university admissions with a proven 98% pass rate for its students over the past three years. It has transformed the advisor market, not only by digitizing the advising process throughout the application process, but Also by making human capital and society the basis of its product.”
Kroshkina is the first organization to win the Global Seedstars competition in its seven-year history. StudyFree has also been selected by Techstars New York City Accelerator and Berkeley SkyYDeck, in addition to attracting investment from Techstars twice. Previous investors have included Acrobator VC, the fund launched by Bas Godska and Joachim Laqueur to invest in Western and Eastern Europe, and Chris Adelsbach.