An online education company co-founded by two Waterloo Engineering alumni announced this week that it has secured $159 million in backing to fuel its expansion.

Prodigy Education, one of the fastest-growing education technology companies in North America, was launched by Rohan Mahimker and Alex Peters, who both graduated in 2011 from the mechatronics engineering program at Waterloo.

"From our beginnings as an undergraduate project nine years ago to today's exciting announcement, we have always operated with a simple yet compelling mission: to help every student in the world love learning,” Mahimker said in a media release. “It will continue to be our guiding light as we transform into a truly global leader in education."

100 million users worldwide

Mahimker and Peters are co-CEOs of the Oakville-based company, which has grown from 3,000 local users to more than 100 million registered users worldwide since developing a video game to help elementary students learn math.

Prodigy is well established in North America, and recently expanded to India, Australia and the United Kingdom.

The investment round was led by U.S. private-equity giant TPG Growth, which has backed disruptive technology companies such as Airbnb, Calm, Ipsy, Spotify and Uber.

'Unique value proposition'

“We believe that Prodigy's unique value proposition for teachers, parents, and students - through advanced technology that fosters a love of learning - positions the company to connect with users across the world,” said David Trujillo, a partner at TPG.

Prodigy will use the investment to drive growth, with plans to double its workforce this year to 800 people.

"We have come a long way as a company, and it's a true testament to the strength and dedication of our team," Peters said in the release.

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