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Intel Has Acquired Kno, Will Push Further Into The Education Content Market With Interactive Textbooks

kno intel

We had a tip about, have now confirmed, Intel’s latest acquisition: Kno, the education startup that started life as a hardware business and later pivoted into software – specifically via apps that let students read interactive versions of digitized textbooks. Intel was among Kno’s investors – the company had raised some $73.4 million in funding since being founded in 2009, with Intel leading the Series C round in April, 2011 (in the $37.5m round, Intel invested $20m).

“I can confirm Intel has purchased Kno,” a spokesperson told me just now. They are not disclosing deal terms but I’m hopefully going to speak to John Galvin, the GM of Intel Education, to get more details. (I’ll update as I learn more.)

Update: Intel has now published a more detailed statement on its site. “The acquisition of Kno boosts Intel’s global digital content library to more than 225,000 higher education and K-12 titles through existing partnerships with 75 educational publishers. Even more, the Kno platform provides administrators and teachers with the tools they need to easily assign, manage and monitor their digital learning content and assessments,” Galvin writes. “We’re looking forward to combining our expertise with Kno’s rich content so that together, we can help teachers create classroom environments and personalized learning experiences that lead to student success. Check out the Intel Education newsroom for ongoing updates from Intel.”

We have still to find out who and what is coming over with the acquisition. Osman Rashid, the co-founder and CEO, was also a co-founder of Chegg.

The deal is the latest development in Intel’s wider efforts to build out its education business. Among other things, recently Intel has put out reference designs for Android-based educational tablets, and it has gotten involved in e-education initiatives.

Kno itself has not yet issued a statement about the deal but its site posted a note a little while ago saying that it would go down for maintenance later today – possibly to post details of the acquisition (?).

We had heard that Kno was talking to interested parties some months ago, so in that sense, this is not a surprise. The company has partnered with 75 publishers and has some 200,000 interactive titles, from kindergarden through to university-level textbooks, that can be accessed via its iPad, Android and Windows 7 and Windows 8 apps. “They are the same books, only smarter,” the company notes on its site. The main idea is that the books are not only digitised but include additional features to help students and teachers assess their progress, share information with others and generally get more engaged in the content.

More to come.

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