Yoto secures $17m to fuel European and North American growth

Published on: 13th May 2021

The company offers access to entertaining audio content that promotes learning and play, and hopes the funding will open this up to more kids than ever before.

Yoto, the audio platform for kids behind the award-winning Yoto Player, has raised $17m in Series A funding to help facilitate its rapid growth across Europe and North America. The investment closed in January and followed the successful 2020 launch of the second generation Yoto Player, which was subsequently awarded one of Time magazine’s Inventions of the Year.

Yoto Player banner, girl listening to audio device

Yoto Player is inspired by Montessori principles and is designed to safely give children full control over their listening with access to entertaining audio that encourages learning and imaginative play. Yoto Player is controlled using physical cards inserted into the Player, which then play audio content.

Since launching the new Yoto Player in early 2020, the company has experienced substantial growth, securing partnerships and content deals with trusted household names such as Lego and Disney as well as licences with Penguin Random House, Sony Music, HarperCollins, Hachette, Macmillan and more. Yoto’s extensive and ever-expanding content library is packed with some of the world’s most popular kids’ content including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Gruffalo, The Snowman, and Planet Omar. Lego Duplo, Frozen, Finding Nemo, and many more household names are set to be released in the coming months.

In an effort to offer audio that will inspire the next generation of independent creative minds, the company is also investing in content that promotes mindfulness, meditation and sleep. Most recently, Yoto launched a series of sleep content cards with Lifescore & Abbey Road Studios. In addition, Yoto offers music, audio-based activities, podcasts, radio and sound effects, and the Yoto Player has a ‘Make Your Own’ function enabling users to link to their favourite radio stations or podcasts, and record their very own stories.

“We designed Yoto around our own kids and we’ve seen how amazing it is to give kids control of their own listening,” said Ben Drury, CEO and co-founder of Yoto. “I’ve seen how this really does help with creativity and imagination compared to screen-time and the research backs that up. I’m thrilled with how far we’ve come and the amount of families we’re getting amazing feedback from, and this new investment, from some of the best funds in the UK and Europe that share our vision, allows us to continue to fuel the curiosity of this generation of young learners through audio.”

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