Course Hero

What it does: Online network for sharing course materials
Founder: Andrew Grauer, 24
Based: Redwood City, Calif.
Revenue 2010: $1.1 million
Revenue 2011 (projected): $2.5 million

A Spanish major at Cornell University, Andrew Grauer started Course Hero in 2006 for college students to share lectures, class notes, exams, and assignments that were typically tossed away each semester. With $10,000 of his own and his brothers' money, Grauer built a website on which subscribers can access such documents as well as online tutors and textbook rentals for $84 per year. To help accumulate materials, Course Hero offers free access to users who upload 40 documents per month. Those are checked by paid reviewers and rated by users. The site has 23,000 paid subscribers and 41,500 users who upload documents, Grauer says. Despite concern about the effects such websites can have on learning, as well as potential copyright issues, Grauer says educators and schools are coming around to the idea of sharing course materials. The company now works with 200 professors and such publishers as Macmillan and Ingram Digital. Course Hero has raised $2.3 million from investors, including Ron Conway and venture capital firm Maveron. —Venessa Wong
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