The World Needs OK Play
The OK Company launches today with OK Play, its first product encouraging children’s social and emotional growth by inspiring kids and parents to play together
The year 2020 will be remembered as an unbelievably challenging time for parents with young children: quarantine at home, work from home, and teach children to learn from home. At Obvious, we believe technology can play a positive role in early childhood education, and this year we know that parents need it more than ever before. That’s why we’re thrilled to announce our Series A investment in The OK Company.
OK Play, a new app launching today from the OK Company, is designed to use screen time as a catalyst for real-world play where parents can foster connections with kids and build empathy, kindness, and creativity. Available today for smartphones and tablets in the Apple and Android app stores, OK Play features a wide range of daily activities that parents and kids can do together, both on-screen and off. OK Play is free for everyone to use, and also offers a premium subscription for parents seeking a deeper curriculum and the ability to save photo and video moments they co-create with their children.
The five co-founders of The OK Company are a dream team with a rich history of working (and playing) together. JJ Aguhob, CEO, and Chris Ovitz, President, logged years together as co-founders of Viddy (the social mobile video platform acquired by Fullscreen). OK’s Chief Scientist Dr. Colleen Russo Johnson is a developmental psychologist with expertise in children’s media and technology who serves as an adjunct professor at Ryerson University and Co-Director of the Ryerson Children’s Media Lab. Ken Chung, CTO, was the CTO back at Viddy and later spent two years in core engineering at Snap where he worked with OK’s Chief Creative Officer Travis Chen.
Fun fact — this is my second time around with Chris as we worked together on Workpop, his previous startup which was acquired by Cornerstone OnDemand.
The first product from the OK Company is called OK Play, and it’s so needed right now. Families are struggling with the myriad challenges of COVID-19, especially as they find themselves unexpected educators at home. OK Play delivers a new way to combine play with social emotional learning for parents and kids together.
OK Play’s interactive activities spark creativity and play designed to involve both children and their parents together. Kids love the entertaining stories and characters, and parents love the embedded social and emotional learning.
As part of our investment, we of course asked the OK founders to create a World Positive Term Sheet where they detailed their mission, core values, as well as goals for diversity across their team and their content. We were thrilled with the results, which included a beautiful, creative, and relevant company value that the OK team calls “Child in the Room”:
We always act as if a child is in the room. This is how we treat each other with respect, stay curious about the world, and continue to be playful.
I hope you’ll invite OK Play into your family and join us on our mission to inspire kids and families to play together.