It looks like bitcoin and blockchain stocks now know “how to get, how to get” to Sesame Street!
Since bitcoin has surged to new levels of popularity, there’s been a steady increase in the demand for blockchain-and-cryptocurrency-focused education. We’ve reported before on increased demand for employees with blockchain development skills. Savvy universities have been quick to respond to this trend by offering relevant coursework – as discussed in our previous piece “Cryptocurrency courses coming to college campuses worldwide.”
Today’s post takes blockchain education to an even younger generation thanks to a partnership between Kano and Sesame Ventures. As the name might indicate, Sesame Ventures is a venture fund formed by the company producing “Sesame Street,” parent company Sesame Workshop. They have now invested in Kano as part of a larger initiative to reach children.
Sesame Street’s venture capital arm has seized a prime opportunity to both benefit from and educate children about cryptocurrency, bitcoin stocks, and buying blockchain.
Kano, best known for its do-it-yourself computer building kits for kids, is excited about the funding from Sesame Ventures as they hope that the investment will help fuel growth and development of new products. Kano has reportedly sold more than 250,000 devices in 150 countries. Its main rival is the company Arduino, which also makes DIY computer building kits.
The investment was part of a $28 million funding round Kano scored last year but no one will yet disclose exactly how much has been poured into the start-up in this latest deal.
Alex Klein, Kano’s chief executive and co-founder, describes his company’s mission as aiming to help children and people of all ages understand how the technology they use every day actually works – versus simply mindlessly consuming it as is far too often the case. Klein has intimated his hopes that this approach creates analytic problem solvers in the future and better connects customers with their products now. It is likely this inspiring aim (and Klein’s matching business plan) that brings the Sesame business together with Kano for a truly beneficial joint business venture.
The company does much more than just make DIY computer kits aimed at children, though. Kano also has an online platform where users can create their own games, websites, and motion sensor hardware that can be customized and programmed per user specs.
Klein anticipated that Kano’s latest capital gains will help the company greatly expand its product offering beyond computer building kits and into industries like blockchain – interactively teaching users about blockchain, cryptocurrency, and the best bitcoin stocks to invest in.
“We see dozens of hours of engagement, actually a level of engagement – especially in the first month – which rivals Snapchat,” Klein elaborated to CNBC this week. “What people are doing on Kano is not just using applications like Whatsapp or Wikipedia or Minecraft but remaking them and sharing their own versions of them. Half of the users on our online platform which is free to use are over the age of 18,” Klein said.
“You’re going to see some product announcements from us in the next few months that will give you a sense of how we are evolving the creative computing system, both software and hardware” Klein said enthusiastically. “I think we’re very well known for our computer kits which sell very well but the real value, as much as it is in the hardware, is in the software and the content.”
“We are also very keen to demystify decentralized networks like the blockchain. We feel that the original premise was build your own computer, learn to code, create the future,” he went on, further adding that “what interests us greatly is building your own internet; learning how networks work so you can protect your data, so you can carefully and creatively open up access ports to other people, exchange files in your own way, kind of take some control back over how these core communication systems in your life work.”
This is great news not only for kids, but for anyone interested in an interactive learning format in the realm of bitcoin stocks and all blockchain-related news.
Tanya Haider, Executive Vice President for Strategy, Research and Ventures at Sesame Workshop, explained in fuller detail the thinking behind the firm’s decision to invest in Kano. The move is part of a larger campaign to put venture capital in companies which can innovate or capture forms of children’s entertainment and education. Blockchain, whether through Kano or another developer, may be able to connect with young audiences in ways current media formats never truly have.
“We can have a much greater impact by partnering with others rather than doing everything ourselves,” Haider explained to CNBC in a fascinating interview. “‘Sesame Street’ was the original disrupter in kid’s media by harnessing the power of television to teach. With Kano, we will be exploring the creation of products, content, and research that positively impact the way parents and children approach technology.”
Sesame Workshop’s little known socially-minded venture fund has made investments in start-ups before. In 2016, it invested in Yup, a science and math tutoring app, and Reach Capital, a venture capital firm focused on education. Along with Kano, these investments form a clear pattern of innovation in children’s media as described by Haider.
Sesame Ventures was set up by Sesame Workshop in 2016. According to Haider, the venture arm has used profits generated by the sale of two of its networks, “Noggin” and “Sprout,” to fund new start-up investments like the one with Kano.