Popular language-learning app developer, HelloTalk, raises nearly US$3M for Wechat-like global language content and services platform as its HelloTalk app surpasses 10 million registered users in less than three years.
Innovative language learning app developer, HelloTalk, Inc., today announced its HelloTalk app has surpassed 10 million registered global users. It took HelloTalk less than three years to grow from less than one million users in 2015 to more than 10 million users today, doing so through mostly organic growth.
Recognizing HelloTalk’s global language platform potential, Seven Sea Partners leads HelloTalk’s US$3 million Pre-A round investment. Founded by Jeff Xiong, former CTO of Wechat developer, Tencent, Seven Sea Partners was attracted by HelloTalk’s potential and positioning as a “vertical segment Wechat for the global language community.” Xiong stated, “Wechat is the most advance platform app in the world, with numerous services running on top through official accounts and mini-programs. There is huge potential for apps adopting Wechat’s model for vertical segments, and I see HelloTalk as the front-runner for global language learning segments.”
HelloTalk pioneered one-tap translation, transliteration, voice-to-text, and grammar correction functions in both chat and social feeds within the HelloTalk app. Users of HelloTalk help their language partners learn and practice close to 200 languages. While English is the most popular language, users also learn, practice, and become proficient in languages including Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, German, French, and Italian. HelloTalk also supports niche languages such as Dothraki, Klingon, indigenous languages, and Esperanto. To date, HelloTalk users have sent more than five billion messages, composed more than 30 million language learning feed posts, and corrected more than 35 million grammar mistakes.
A key strength of HelloTalk is that it adopts a more people and community-oriented approach to learning by enabling users to practice 200 different languages with native speakers and other learners. Most other apps focus on memorization, but HelloTalk puts communication first. “Duolingo only has about 25 language courses available for users to learn, but already has amassed close to 300 million users. The market potential for a Wechat- or Facebook-like vertical global language platform app should be at least 500-800 million,” said HelloTalk founder and CEO, Zackery Ngai.
HelloTalk also plans to launch three new platform services that will help build on its continued success and capitalize on the size of its ever-growing user community.
The first of the new services, HelloTalk Official Account Systems, enables content creators to reach HelloTalk’s community in a manner similar to Wechat and Facebook Messenger’s official accounts. “There’s an abundance of language content and services available online today, but there’s no one platform that connects global language users, content, and services together in one place,” says Ngai. “HelloTalk is an app built specifically for these purposes. Now language content and service providers can take advantage of the HelloTalk platform to make their content and services available to targeted high-quality language learners.”
Along with HelloTalk Official Account Systems, HelloTalk also launched a teaching platform within the HelloTalk app itself, to help professional language teachers reach potential students, teaching one-to-many language classes on a platform built specifically for language learning. HelloTalk provides dedicated customer service and exposure to help professional language teachers build a successful business through the platform.
Finally, built using data amassed from HelloTalk’s 35 million grammar correction corpora, HelloTalk announced the launch of its automated English grammar correction service beta, available through the HelloTalk app and at www.hellotalk.com/grammarbot. Launched in partnership with global neural machine translation and machine learning company, Systran Translation, HelloTalk’s vast archive of native speaker contributions enables the development of a more sophisticated automated English grammar correction service.