Pluralsight Continues to Grow, Acquires Code School

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In a $36-million deal, Florida-based Code School has been acquired by the online technological training service Pluralsight.

Code School, available for use through the company’s website or as a mobile app, offers developers multiple instructional courses and videos in areas including JavaScript, HTML/CSS, Ruby, iOS and Git, combined with screencasts where users can then practice what they have learned.

This makes Pluralsight’s sixth acquisition in less the two years.  The company has been focusing on purchasing smaller businesses in an effort to expand their own footprint on the online learning industry.  Currently the company offers an online catalog of almost 4,000 courses.

The company said acquiring Code School will allow them to offer a wider variety of courses to reach developers at every stage of their career, focusing on those who have minimal coding experience or excel with more hands-on training.

“If you look at the Pluralsight library today, most of the courses target professionals that are fairly experienced,” says Pluralsight CEO Aaron Skonnard. Many of Pluralsight’s current customers are those who have 10 or even 20 years coding, in fact. “We’re really strong on that end of the spectrum, but what we haven’t been as strong in – because we haven’t focused on it – is the earlier stages of a developer’s career,” says Skonnard.

Skonnard went on to say that Code School offers a “more fun, more engaging, and overall more effective” way to learn to code than other companies in the business.   The company offers a balance of hands-on experience and videos, in that users watch a short video segment and then stop to practice what they have just watched before continuing to the next video.

Code School currently has 40,000 actively learning members, and has increased membership by 50% over the past year to reach 1 million.  According to the company, 15% of its members use the videos to increase standing at their current job, or to obtain a new one, writes Sarah Perez for Tech Crunch.

Pluralsight had a $135 million Series B funding round last August, which has allowed the company to acquire more companies, including PeepCode, Tekpub, TrainSignal, and Digital-Tutors.  In all, the company has 3 million users, most of whom are paying customers.

In all, Pluralsight has raised $162.5 million in outside funding.

The company is offering new users who register on the platform this week 72 hours of free access to Code School courses through the Pluralsight library, also including the Digital-Tutors courses.  The offer is good through January 29.  In addition, Code School will be placing 10 Pluralsight courses onto its website, available for subscribers.

Skonnard plans to combine the two companies further down the road to help developers complete their education, starting out learning coding on Code School and then continue on to Pluralsight.