Skip to content Skip to navigation

Education startup scores victory in annual SXSW competition

Renee Bruner and Chris Fitzgerald Walsh
Renee Bruner and Chris Fitzgerald Walsh accept the $2,500 award that Zaption received, as part of getting first place in the LAUNCHedu contest.

Education startup scores victory in annual SXSW competition

Two alumni helped to mastermind the winning pitches for the new company Zaption and its video-based learning tools and interactive content.

Chris Fitzgerald Walsh, MA ’00, and Renee Bruner, MA ’14, are part of the team at a San Francisco-based tech startup — Zaption — which won the grand prize in the LAUNCHedu startup competition at the SXSWedu conference in Austin, Texas.

A March 12 news release from SXSWedu offered a description of the company:

Zaption transforms video-based learning with interactive content and tools that engage learners, deepen understanding and track progress. Teachers and trainers use Zaption to quickly add images, text and questions to existing online videos. With Zaption’s Analytics, instructors can get immediate feedback on how students interact with content and understand key concepts.

Both Walsh and Bruner are graduates of the Learning, Design and Technology program at Stanford Graduate School of Education. Walsh is the company’s chief executive offer and Bruner its “marketing maven,” according to the company home page.

This was the fourth annual LAUNCHedu competition, and Zaption competed against nine other startups over two days of pitching. Among the judges were New Schools Venture Fund CEO Stacey Childress and Robert Metcalfe, the co-inventor of Ethernet. The organizers reported that they had received a record number of entries before selecting the 10 finalists.

The competition, which focuses on early-stage startups in the education space, is one of the many features of the SXSWedu Conference & Festival in Austin. The four-day event draws a wide variety of educators and includes talks, workshops, hands-on learning experiences and film screenings.

Get the Educator

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

Back to the Top