Promethean World Plc (LSE:PRW), a world leader in the rapidly growing global market for interactive learning technology, has announced that it has agreed to acquire SynapticMash Inc, a start-up US education formative assessment software company. The acquisition is expected to complete before the end of July 2010.
The initial consideration is $10 million in cash, of which $1 million is deferred for 18 months. A further performance related consideration of $3 million may be payable in 18 months, dependent on retention of key SynapticMash employees and sales targets.
Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Seattle, SynapticMash has developed a sophisticated and modular cloud-based formative assessment platform that is being marketed to US school districts through a subscription model. Its learning management system, LearningQube, transforms the way schools collect and manage classroom data, enabling teachers and administrators to better assess and track student performance.
Formative assessment is the evaluation of student performance instantaneously during the learning process rather than by formal exam typically at the end of a term or school year. It enables teachers to modify lessons during the progression of a course, based on their students’ levels of understanding, leading to differentiated instruction and improved academic achievement.
SynapticMash directly fits Promethean’s education strategy and significantly strengthens Promethean’s formative assessment and learner response systems (LRS) offering. LRS are handheld devices that allow students to contribute in real time during lessons, and enable teachers to instantly gauge student understanding.
SynapticMash’s LearningQube software will be fully integrated with Promethean’s LRS devices and specialised educational software, ActivInspire, to create a new and powerful formative assessment proposition for the education market, enabling teachers as well as school administrators to improve student assessment and performance.