Darren Shimkus spent five years scaling Udemy, a corporate learning business, from $1 million in annual recurring revenue to $100 million. Eight months before the education company went public, though, Shimkus left his gig as president of Udemy Business to investigate a feeling.
“I thought I had innovation to bring to the industry,” he said. “But there’s Darren in what he thinks and in what he sees, and then there is a world that is.” The entrepreneur spent six months interviewing heads of data, talent development and engineering to figure out shared pain points in the world of education. “What I realized was how important it is to reintroduce the human connection back into the learning process,” he said.
Somewhat ironically, Shimkus landed on teaming up with former Udemy CEO Dennis Yang to take a second swing at building the world’s biggest enterprise education company, albeit with an entirely different approach from