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eLearning company speeds up virtual offer in response to COVID-19

Scale-up strategy developed with support from Enterprise Europe Network allows Cambridge firm to react quickly to markets disrupted by pandemic.

Written by Penny Lord on 16 April 2020

Main Image
Three members of the OBRIZUM R&D and Product team working at a table with OBRIZUM-branded pop-up stand in the backgroundan

© OBRIZUM®

Full-time staff grown to 15

Second £1.1m funding round under way

Digital roll-out of virtual events in 2020

A Cambridge-based educational technology company has adapted swiftly and successfully to the disruption caused to global markets by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

OBRIZUM® Group, which has been developing its business strategy with support from Enterprise Europe Network, serves organisations in high-skills sectors across the world, including healthcare and finance.

 

Last year the company identified the need to offer virtual and augmented reality to clients seeking its adaptive learning and development programmes.

 

Since the threat from the coronavirus became apparent OBRIZUM Group has stepped up its digital solutions roll-out. Conferences due to be held in Cambridge and Vienna are now being planned as virtual events with a combination of live and on-demand sessions.

 

OBRIZUM Group’s eLearning and analytics software already employs artificial intelligence and data science methodologies to allow clients to convey complex information through internal training.

 

Global Business Innovation programmes

 

The business was spun out from Cambridge University in 2015 under the name CamBioScience. The co-founders and early management team comprised scientists from the Stem Cell Institute as well as technologists and senior software engineers from the university.

 

EEN adviser Penny Lord began working with them in 2017 through the innovate2succeed (i2s) programme, initially on their investor pitch deck and value proposition.

 

CamBioScience subsequently joined Global Business Innovation programmes run by EEN on behalf of Innovate UK and focusing on the US and Canada.  

 

EEN has also advised on a strategy for raising finance as well as environmental policy and recruitment as the company has grown to 15 full-time employees and a network of consultants working remotely.

 

Satellite offices have been opened in London and South Korea and EEN carried out an IP audit to help protect the OBRIZUM trademark ahead of a move into the Chinese market.

 

eLearning media content 

 

Penny, who continues to act as a sounding board for the co-founder and chief operating officer, Dr Jürgen Fink, said: “What we did originally in helping to develop the business strategy has facilitated a lot of what the company has achieved since.”

 

The company attracted early investment from Cambridge Capital Group, Angels in MedCity, Henley’s Business Angels, and private investors from the UK, Dubai, and Germany, in a £1.1 million funding round.

 

Led by London-based investment house Beaubridge (UK) Ltd, it closed in January 2019. Staff numbers had grown to 10 employees, with total revenues topping £1 million.

 

More staff were added after a name change to OBRIZUM® Group Ltd, along with a move to new headquarters in the heart of Cambridge and satellite offices in London and Seoul. The company is now structured in three divisions: OBRIZUM®, OBRIZUM®X, and OBRIZUM®Media, which provides eLearning media content for clients.

 

A second funding round is currently under way to raise a further £1 million as the company scales up.

The EEN support goes beyond what we thought the innovate2succeed programme would provide.”

Dr Juergen Fink, co-founder and chief operating officer.