Learn Happy, Learn Loud… & Learn Free
Growing up & staying true
When we first kicked around the ideas that later became Kahoot!, we never imagined it would generate the kind of impact that it has.
Of course we hoped a bunch of people would use the platform, but we were really designing it just for one. We designed it for the bored and disengaged kid at the back of the classroom — you know who you are. We believed that if we could get them excited about learning, then getting others to play would be easy.
Why was that kid so important to us? Because we believed (and still do) that learning can help solve some of the greatest challenges we face today — together as a society, and in our own quiet lives.
We wanted to make learning an experience that everyone wanted to — and was able to — engage with. Everyone. Irrespective of age, aptitude, race, economic or social circumstance.
Kahoot! launched as a free platform, and staying free (and therefore accessible to everyone) has been a huge part of our mission ever since.
Because of this, the people and partners we bring on board matter a whole lot. We never just hire for experience, we hire for heart.
Our culture is as important to our future as our code.
We’re not a team of four anymore. And our responsibilities to the people who use our platform only grows as they do.
About 2 years ago I met Erik Harrell. Erik’s a pretty remarkable guy in the tech space. Not just because he’s sat at some insanely long boardroom tables, but because he understands that staying free and scaling aren’t mutually exclusive. That creative and commercial prosperity are, in fact, co-enablers.
One of his many successes in this space was helping take Opera — a free product in a free category — to a $775m revenue company. After new fruitful conversations, we finally convinced Erik to jump on board and help Kahoot! fully realise its potential.
So today he takes the helm as our CEO, strengthening our execution, operational and commercial capacity as we grow into this next phase. To ensure we keep delivering, heart and soul, on our product, platform and partnership opportunities, I’ll be taking up a new role as Kahoot!’s Chief Strategy Officer and continue as Board Director.
Over the next few months we’ll continue to grow our talent to accelerate our journey as one of the world’s fastest growing learning brands. We’re immensely proud to have 33m MAUs globally, and millions of creators registered as teachers and students. But we’re just at the starting blocks.
Bringing people like Erik on board enables us to keep investing back into a better learning experience for all — through new features, new partnerships and more. Like Jumble, our newest game format (read about and test it), and our on-going R&D into game-based narratives.
Our quest to make learning relevant and awesome for all has just been dialled up a notch.
Welcome to the K!rew Erik.
About Erik Harrell
Erik was most recently the Chief Strategy Officer (2010–2016) and Chief Financial Officer (2005–2016) for Opera Software (OSEBX: OPERA), and Chief Operating Officer from 2006–2010.
He has extensive experience scaling and building consumer Internet and software companies in CxO-level roles (as CEO & Founder, COO, CSO and CFO), with 18 years experience building tech-enabled category-busters.
During his tenure at Opera, the number of consumers using their products grew from 6m MAUs in 2004 to more than 350m, and revenues grew from $15m (2004) to an annualised revenue run rate of $775m, based on ‘Q4 2015’ revenues.
Moreover, as Chief Strategy Officer, Opera raised more than $500m to fund a major strategic transformation of its business from a ‘pure play’ browser company into a global leading mobile consumer product.
Erik also has extensive experience collaborating with founders and senior executives at early to mid-stage high tech companies, both via his CSO/Head of M&A/CFO position at Opera (where 17 companies were acquired from 2010–2016) and as an active angel investor, where he has invested in over 10 companies in the social media, online video, enterprise software and security markets.
Since our launch in 2013, Kahoot! has turned game-based learning into a pop culture phenomenon. The irreverent game platform now hosts over 33 million MAUs, and a public library of 10 million learning games, created and shared by fans in 180 countries. Kahoot! is on a mission to improve education globally, by unlocking the magic of learning for everyone — of any age, aptitude or circumstance. Let’s play!