A DreamIt Ventures alumnus who moved to New York City in 2009 has now launched in Philadelphia an outpost of his newest venture.
Tutorspree, an online marketplace for private instructors and tutors, started support last month for Philadelphians looking to make extra cash through k-12 study help. The New York startup comes from founders Aaron Harris, 27, Josh Abrams, 28, and Ryan Bednar, 26, who was the lead developer for SeatGeek, the search engine of ticket sales on the secondary market that was a 2009 graduate of the University City incubator.
The startup, which takes a cut on tutor rates, is also in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and Boston.
“Philly is an area of focus for us,” Bednar said. “We’re looking to ramp up our number of tutors there, particularly in SAT test prep and computer programming.
Harris and Abrams reached out to Bednar after coming across his work on a Hacker News hire thread. In further Philadelphia crossover, the three co-founders have announced their first hire is Paul deGrandis, 25, who graduated DreamIt with his company OurShelf and helped get Code for America get off the ground. OurShelf fizzled following its DreamIt run, without finding further outside investment.
“He was the most talented hacker at DreamIt when I was there, and he’s already improved our technology dramatically in just a few weeks,” Bednar said, adding that the team’s freelance designer is 2010 Drexel graduate Brent Meyer.
Tutorspree was a part of Y Combinator’s winter 2011 class, launching this January after its stay in Palo Alto. The startup has raised angel money from Paul Buccheit and Adam D’Angelo and was part of the first YC class to get $150,ooo from SV Angel and Yuri Milner, as the Wall Street Journal reported.
Bednar left SeatGeek almost a year ago to pursue other interests but remains in touch the team there, Bednar said.
Though not driven by k-12 education, Skillshare, another New York startup online marketplace for teaching hit the Philadelphia market this month.
Watch CEO Aaron Harris talk about Tutorspree