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Latin America’s Largest MOOC Provider is Up for Sale

MiriadaX logo

Launched in 2013, MiríadaX is an initiative of Universia, a network of 1300+ Ibero-American universities, backed by Spanish multinationals Banco Santander and Telefónica. In 2017, Telefónica’s educational arm, TED, became the sole owner of the platform.

Now, Telefónica is selling TED in a bid to refocus its operations on its core business. MiríadaX, the world’s largest Spanish-language MOOC platform, is looking for a buyer.

In a market largely controlled by a handful of providers, the announcement emphasizes the challenges of serving learners outside the English-speaking world.

Significance

Although MiríadaX’s sale doesn’t mark the end of the platform, it’s not an encouraging sign. Outside of China, the MOOC market is largely controlled by three players: Coursera, edX, and FutureLearn. And with competitors such as MiríadaX dwindling, this control is only reinforced.

In the last few years, no new major MOOC platform was launched. This further established big players as the option of choice to reach e-learners. But these providers are picky when it comes to partnerships. So, for small universities, already limited options are shrinking even more.

If the MOOC landscape is shaped by those partnerships, then the market is increasingly being defined by a limited number of large, global organizations, to the detriment of small, local ones.  And since large organizations typically focus on English speakers, the needs of learners outside the English-speaking world may further go unaddressed.

By the Numbers

In seven years, MiríadaX has grown to 6.5M learners, 1000+ courses and 100+ partners:

MiríadaX growth
2013 2020
Learners 188 thousand 6.6 million
Courses 58 1000+
Partners 18 100+

The vast majority of MiríadaX courses are taught in Spanish, making it the largest MOOC platform besides those in China to target non-English speakers.

Here’s a breakdown of where MiríadaX’s learners mainly come from:

  1. Spain: 37%
  2. Mexico: 11%
  3. Colombia: 10%
  4. Peru: 8%
  5. Argentina: 6%

In fact, only 6% of MiríadaX’s learners are based in countries with a primary language other than Spanish — mainly the USA and Brazil.

The platform’s most popular courses in 2019 include:

MiríadaX also offer paid certificates; the platform’s best sellers include:

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