Increasing Parenting Pressure Nourish Education Sector, Kaishu Closes a New Funding
China's storytelling apps are in demand because of the growing dependency ratio. Content quality and user experience are important for early childhood education products.
Kaishu Story (Kaishujianggushi, 凯叔讲故事) completed a more than USD 50 million Series C round of financing, indicating a rising demand in parenting assistance.
Kaishu Story is a startup focusing on the overlap of two hot areas: paid online knowledge sharing and early childhood education. Positioning itself as bedtime storytelling product，Kaishu Story started with a Wechat official account in 2014 and launched the App in 2016.
According to the data from National Bureau of Statistics of China, national dependency ratio, the number of dependents aged zero to 14 and over the age of 65, was 40.4% as of 2018, increasing from 2017 figure of 39.2%. The national age dependency ratio, young was 23.7% in 2018, growing from 23.4% from the previous year.
China's Generation Y, consisting of people born in the 80's and the early 90's, are the young parents who are bearing more pressure than ever. During the past decade, Economists have been talking about the Lewis Turning Point coming to China. With the diminishing demographic dividends, there's a sporadic shortage of labor supply and '996' working hour system gradually becoming a common sense to the society.
The storytelling products contain two goals: entertainment and education, fulfilling the demand of this group of parents who lack of time organizing stories and answering their kids' potential questions systematically. To reach the purpose, the team spends about CNY 5 million to CNY 15 million with the R&D period around one to three years for each product.
The Series C funding round was led by Baidu, New Oriental, TAL, Kunyan Capital. The storytelling app will cooperate with Baidu in smart audio technologies to further improve its user experience. Besides, it will provide the content to Baidu products including Baidu App and Xiaodu smart devices, which in turn will bridge a greater user base and provide content distributing capabilities to Kaishu.
The quality-oriented approach contributes to daily users spending around 50 to 60 min on average, paid users around 70 min. As of now, Kaishu Story app has over 4 billion listens and total users over 30 million.