2016 Disruptor 50: No. 12 Udacity

Founder: Sebastian ThrunLaunched: 2011Funding: $163.1 million Valuation: $1.1 billion Disrupting: Education Rival: Coursera When Stanford University research professor Sebastian Thrun decided to offer his Introduction to Artificial Intelligence course online for free, back in 2011, he had little expectation that 160,000 students in 190 countries would enroll. But they did, and not long afterward Udacity was born. Read MoreFULL LIST: 2016 DISRUPTOR 50 Unlike other e-learning platforms, such as Coursera, which offers courses across a wide variety of topics, Udacity is focused on tech. It partners with leading Silicon Valley companies — Google, Facebook, AT&T, Cloudera and Salesforce, among them — to create and tailor courses, or what the company calls “nanodegrees,” that teach the specific skills these employers are looking for. The goal, the company says, is to give…


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