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Success Stories

ApplyBoard Becomes Canada’s Newest Unicorn

AC JumpStart and Startup Visa recipient ApplyBoard raises $100M in Series C funding on a $2B valuation. The investment will accelerate product development, fuel expansion into new markets and improve access to education for international students.

May 5, 2020

Unicorn: A privately held startup company valued at over $1 billion.

ApplyBoard, the online platform that transforms how students access international education opportunities, today closed $100 million in Series C funding on a $2 billion valuation. The historic round of funding was led by Drive Capital and joined by certain funds managed by Fidelity Investments Canada ULC, Business Development Bank of Canada and existing investors including Anthos CapitalArtiman VenturesGarage Capital, and Plug and Play Tech Center.

Co-founders Martin, Meti and Massi Basiri launched the company in 2015—the same year it became an Accelerator Centre client—as a result of the challenges they endured coming to Canada as international students themselves. Built upon the fundamental belief that education is a right and not a privilege, ApplyBoard is on a mission to educate the world by providing every student with access to educational opportunities.

ApplyBoard logo

“Education has the power to change lives, but the process of applying to study abroad remains incredibly difficult for many students,” said Martin Basiri, co-founder and CEO of ApplyBoard. “My brothers and I founded ApplyBoard to ensure that every student has the ability to access education. Accelerated by recent events, it’s vital we fuel innovation that supports the future success of the education sector. We are committed to advancing our work with students, educational institutions, and recruitment partners to improve lives through education.”

ApplyBoard streamlines and simplifies the study abroad application process by connecting students, educational institutions, and recruitment partners on its platform. Through its innovative technology, students are enabled to easily discover and apply to study at the best secondary and post-secondary educational institutions in Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom using a single application. By joining the platform, educational institutions benefit from expanding their brand reach worldwide and enriching on-campus diversity by recruiting qualified students virtually.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Martin and his team because we believe ApplyBoard makes the world a better place. They are fundamentally changing the way students across the globe access education,” said Nick Solaro, partner at Drive Capital.

With this round of funding, ApplyBoard plans to invest in its technology, partner with educational institutions in new destination countries, and serve a broader diversity of students and recruitment partners globally. ApplyBoard—recognized by Deloitte in 2019 as Canada’s fastest-growing technology company—works with over 1,200 educational institutions and 4,000 recruitment partners. To date, the company has assisted over 100,000 students with their educational journey.