Online training for all

Category: New in Berlin

Sebastian Thrun / © Udacity

Sebastian Thrun / © Udacity

Sebastian Thrun / © Udacity

The American startup Udacity has openend an office in Berlin. In November last year the online academy for IT professionals had collected 105 million euros in a round of financing in order to expand on a global scale. For a start, five employees in the Berlin office are to tap into the markets in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. 

As is widely known, well qualified IT professionals are scarce and thus very sought after on the labour market. Udacity will now provide redress – the startup from San Francisco offers online training in the area of technology. The more than 100 introductory courses are the ones that are best-liked. But for a monthly training fee of 200 euros students can also obtain a certificate after six months – so-called “Nanodegrees”. The aim is to make IT knowledge affordable for everyone and to democratise training, explains Sebastian Thrun, who founded the company in 2012. 

Cooperation with IT and automobile industry intended

The Bertelsmann Education Group, the biggest shareholder of the company, will support Udacity in the German, Austrian and Swiss regions. CEO Kay Krafft emphasises that “training is a strategical growth area for Bertelsmann”. The country manager for Germany, Austria and Switzerland is Nicolas Dittberner. He announced that he will work with the best partners of the German economy in order to find jobs for Nanodegree graduates. According to Dittberner, he is already in talks with companies from the IT and automobile industry that are currently looking for talents and experts in the area of machine learning. “In this context, our Machine Learning Engineer Nanodegree is worth looking at, of course,” explains Dittberner. “Ultimately, Udacity aims to achieve the greatest possible added value for both sides, the students and the companies.” 

Launched in June, more than 10,000 people in Germany are now studying via Udacity. Since in Germany formal training certificates a very important for applicants, in future Udacity will provide its students with certifications. However, in terms of content the courses are the same as in the US, and are taught in English as well.