UK EdTech startup Erase All Kittens – an online game that teaches kids, especially young girls, coding skills – has signed a distribution deal with Tesco, one of the UK’s largest supermarkets. The move comes on International Women’s Day, an annual date in the diary to support women and girls globally. Erase All Kittens has so far raised over $1 million in Seed funding.
The deal means that Tesco Clubcard vouchers can be used to purchase an annual subscription to Erase All Kittens for £9.99 per year, via Tesco’s website. There are 20 million Tesco Clubcard Members, and 6.6 million regularly using the store’s app.
A spokesperson for Tesco Clubcard said: “We’re delighted to team up with Erase All Kittens, whose work encouraging girls into coding is so vitally important in a world where digital literacy is vital to our everyday lives.”
Erase All Kittens is an online game that teaches kids professional coding skills, as they “set off on an adventure to save kittens in a magical Internet Universe”. It’s won several awards to date.
EAK says each teaching method on the game has been designed to spark the imagination of 7-13 year-olds, allowing players to build and fix levels using real source code. Designed to appeal to both girls and boys, EAK claims that 95% of the girls surveyed want to learn more about coding after playing the game.
The startups says the “Mario-style” web-based game has reached over 160,000 players, in 4,000 schools, in more than 100 countries. Last year it raised a $1 million seed funding led by Twinkl Educational Publishing, with participation from first investor Christian Reyntjens of the A Black Square family office, alongside angel investors, including one of the founders of Shazam.
CEO and co-founder Dee Saigal said: “There is still a huge misconception that coding and engineering are more for boys, when in fact it’s gender bias keeping women out of careers in STEM. Unless more girls and young women learn how to use technology to shape the world we live in, the gender gap will just keep growing. We’ve built Erase All Kittens to address this problem on a global scale, and we’re incredibly excited to be partnering with Tesco to inspire more girls across the UK to code and create.”