[FW Radar] Speaken, an app to help French people practice English
Speaken was founded by three friends Olivier Croce, Jeremy Marc and Pierre Josseaux. After working together on different projects, they embarked on entrepreneurship in January 2016.
The Speaken application allows users to chat daily with native foreigners via a live chat. The goal is to improve your level of English quickly while practicing.
The device is available from 4.99 euros. More details with Olivier Croce, co-founder of Speaken.
FrenchWeb: What needs does Speaken meet?
Olivier Croce, co-founder: Speaken will reconcile the French with the English. France is ranked 17th out of 44 non-English speaking countries in the TOEFL ranking. I was a head hunter for 8 years, I met a lot of executives who were frustrated with their level of English and were missing out on professional opportunities. I work with many French entrepreneurs who wish to develop internationally and the language barrier is a real obstacle.
In a market of 60 billion dollars, 70% of students abandon traditional training solutions. In addition, the teaching is considered too theoretical and the training is expensive.
Mastering one (or more) language has become essential all over the world, and is a matter of survival for the French!
What’s your value proposition?
Become bilingual in English by practicing 20 minutes a day. Our application connects native English-speaking tutors with students wishing to improve their level of English 24/7. The practice of English becomes easy, accessible anytime and anywhere.
Who are the users of your solutions?
Our clients are for the moment mainly executives, young professionals or confirmed, who have a basic knowledge in English but who need to progress to speak fluently.
They are hyper connected people, nomads, and who do not have the time to do intensive training. They need to progress to change jobs, go to live abroad, be comfortable with international clients or develop their business abroad (CEO of Start-up for example).
No appointment is necessary. Users of the app can speak directly with tutors live or book chat sessions. At the end of each session, the tutor assesses the student and vice versa, in complete transparency. The sessions take place by video conference and are all recorded. They can watch and re-watch the sessions as many times as they want.
Thanks to the application, they can speak English whenever they want, the conversations are playful and interactive micro-moments.
What sets you apart from your competition?
We are the only ones to offer an alternative fullweb and totally mobile to classical education and to directly connect natives and students anywhere, anytime.
Our competitors are Babbel, Duolingo… algorithmic solutions where you are alone in front of a robot. It’s fun, free, but not very motivating. But also the traditional actors of training in English… Wall Street, Berlitz… professional solutions, known and recognized but with expensive services, not very fun and motivating.
What is your development plan?
Our app is available on iOS. The Android version is expected in a few weeks. We are also imagining a Desktop version.
We have integrated a newsfeed, with current topics on which students can discuss with our tutors.
We are in the process of preparing large partnerships with training players to target the B2B market. We plan to recruit developers, salespeople and online marketing talent.
What are your challenges?
The market is huge, ultra competitive… .but the market lacks innovation. We strongly believe in “speed language learning“, Ie the ability to learn or practice a language differently. We want to recreate the benefits of immersion abroad thanks to our viurtual and mobile solution.
We are in the process of finalizing a fundraising that will allow us to industrialize our product in France, create growth on the B2C and B2B target, recruit new talents and prepare for international deployment (multi-languages, multi- country).
Founder: Olivier Croce, Jeremy Marc and Pierre Josseaux
Creation date : january 2016
Fundraising : In progress
Seat : Paris