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Homemobile21-year-old raises $1 million to help panicked students

21-year-old raises $1 million to help panicked students

An exam revision app idea, originally thought up by a 17-year-old, has launched a new mobile learning platform with content for most U.K. and U.S. secondary school qualifications, aided by over $1 million in seed funding.

George BurgessCharlie JH Round-Turner

The three men behind the popular Innocent Drinks franchise have invested in the company, Gojimo, through JamJar Investments, their consumer venture fund.

What's more George Burgess, the founder and CEO of Gojimo, is still only 21 and one of the youngest individuals the team has invested in.

(Read more: Meet the 17-Year-old who is reinventing news)

Burgess was surprised that in an increasingly app-centric world, there were no decent educational aids available for the smartphone generation.

"We've seen mobiles and tablets revolutionize every part of our lives, except for education. Gojimo changes that," Burgess said.

He created an app to aid his prep for a key geography exam, with the a freelance developer, and the app soon became so popular with other students that he followed it up with a raft of other revision aids.

Now, Gojimo has teamed up with academic publishers like McGraw-Hill Education and Oxford University Press, and the app basically aggregates their content and allows panicked students to download textbooks, study guides and quizzes.

(Read more: 'Common' application for college faces glitches)

Not only does this allow easy-access for students, it also helps the publishers.

"The quizzes are the thing that traditionally the publisher might have put on their free online resource and historically would not be used by students," Burgess told CNBC in a phone interview. "And we're now taking those and giving the publishers the ability to monetize that content and make better use of it."

Pricing varies: A couple of hundred quiz questions for a GCSE exam, taken by pupils aged 16, may be as low as £1.50, while a whole book of exam preparation might be as high as £20, Burgess explained.

Now schools can partake in theapp, with an institutional purchase, allowing teachers to send out assignments and make announces through the app, as well as being able to track their students' progress.

The barriers for the app in schools is that Gojimo as of yet does not have an Android offering, and some teachers want to distribute their own content via the device, something the app also does not yet accommodate for.

Not that Burgess sees that many barriers in the app's way overall.

"We have a quite an aggressive international expansion plan," he said, stating that he aims to open up the South African market later this year. His thinking mirrors the recent comments of Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who said that 2014 was a key year for mobile, arguing that: "By the end of this year we will have more mobile traffic than PC traffic."

(Read more: Why 2014 is 'tipping point' for Internet: Marissa Mayer)

Burgess said he wants to focus on developing countries. "In some places they are actually ahead of places like the U.K. and the U.S.," Burgess said. "You take South Africa or Kenya for instance and they use their phones for mobile banking and healthcare and everything. South Africa for us will sort of be an early attempt to see what one of those markets will be like."

Does Burgess not think that encouraging students to learn and revise off their smartphones or tablets will make them too wedded to their devices, and make them struggle with pen and paper in an actual exam setting?

"I think that won't be the case in exams for the foreseeable future," Burgess confidently predicted. "I think that will change in terms of how students sit the exams. Pen and paper is definitely not sustainable long term."

—By CNBC's Kiran Moodley. Follow him on Twitter @kirancmoodley


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