Chicago EdTech Innovare Raises $2M in Seed Capital

The Chicago-based EdTech will use the funds to develop its cloud strategy and analytics platform

Chicago EdTech Innovare Raises $2M in Seed Capital

Innovare, a Chicago-based EdTech has raised an additional $2M in seed capital. he company has raised $5M to date. Investors in this round include Cleveland Avenue of Chicago whose CAST US fund invests in diverse Chicagoland founders that offer unique tech-driven solutions to address systemic social issues, Mexico City/Austin-based Dux Capital, Chicago-based Tawani Ventures, and returning investor Portfolia’s Rising America Fund of San Francisco, among others.

Innovare was founded in July of 2017 to meet the unique needs of K-12 education administrators and executives in nonprofits. The company’s web-based application Inno™ aggregates the siloed data of K-12 schools such as student information systems, standardized assessments, attendance, reading and math ed-tech programs, and spreadsheets, into one personalized dashboard. The platform enables leadership teams to develop data-driven strategies, build a continuous improvement culture, and measure real-time impact using the synthesized data. In nonprofit organizations, the application is used by executive directors and boards to visualize impact data, manage key initiatives, and measure program ROI.

“We are proud to inspire additional venture interest in our platform; given the current economic environment, we’re more committed than ever to leverage our technology to ensure the impact of education and philanthropic investments across the US and beyond,” said AJ DeLeón, Co-Founder and CEO, whose experience in the nonprofit, education and philanthropic sectors including working for Chicago Public Schools and the Gates Foundation spans more than two decades. Innovare’s founding team also includes Chief Growth Officer Nicholas Freeman, former Chicago Public Schools data strategist, and Chief Product Officer, Fernando DeLeón, former Google Product Development Program Manager and Accenture Management Consultant. Most team members have former experience as educators and academic administrators and they fully represent the diversity of our nation’s schools, with a majority identifying as women, LGBTQ+, and people of color.

Andrea Zopp, Managing Partner of the CAST US Fund of Cleveland Avenue stated, “Innovare’s cutting edge analytics and strategy platform not only enables educators to better access and understand the massive amounts of student related data they receive, but also removes the silos between various data sources allowing for strategic analysis and impactful use. We are excited to support Innovare’s continued growth and critically important work, which drives improved outcomes for students.”

Dux Capital shared, “Innovare’s top-tier founders are a perfect example of the underinvested in and underrepresented leaders we strive to support. Plus, the industry, product and solution have great cross border potential and we are excited about that too.”

Tawani Ventures stated, “Innovare’s positive reception by education leaders validates the value the platform is bringing to its customers. We are thrilled to be backing a team with great passion for driving positive outcomes for students.”

Noramay Cadena of women-powered fund Portfolia stated, “Rising America Fund II focuses on founders, ecosystems, and products and services historically ignored by traditional venture capitalists. As such, we resonate with AJ’s vision to improve education outcomes and are excited to make a follow-on investment to support the company’s growth and resulting social impact.”

The Woods Family Foundation highlighted their experience with utilizing the Inno app stating, “Innovare has been saving us time and energy with our Chicago Public Schools partners. It’s great to have experts in the field to speak to. They are also revamping our dashboards so that they are giving us quick wins with our staff. I look forward to seeing our new milestones, and looking forward to gathering survey data from our stakeholders through their platform.”

Innovare will use the capital raised to continue to grow across the largest education markets in the United States. The company will also enhance its proprietary platform’s IP by launching a new version of its app Inno™ that will make data aggregation and analysis seamless and will leverage machine learning to provide strategic planning insights. Innovare’s future roadmap includes the launch of the first edtech marketplace to match educators with vetted solutions to their most pressing problems.

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