Valhalla Partners Completes Investment in Flat World Knowledge, Inc.

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Valhalla Partners today announced it has invested in Flat World Knowledge, the world's first publisher of commercial open-source college textbooks. Valhalla partnered with Greenhill SAVP and High Peaks Venture Partners on an $8m Series A financing.

Valhalla Partners today announced it has invested in Flat World Knowledge, the world's first publisher of commercial open-source college textbooks. Valhalla partnered with Greenhill SAVP and High Peaks Venture Partners on an $8m Series A financing.

"This is an exciting investment," said Hooks Johnston, General Partner at Valhalla Partners, who will join the Company's Board of Directors. "Like MP3's blew up the delivery model for recorded music, the blogosphere and online news sources blew up the newspaper business, Flat World Knowledge is blowing up another sleepy, bloated industry that has lost touch with its customers. It's ripe for the picking, and we're backing the perfect team to make it happen."

Flat World Knowledge, founded by former textbook industry executives, offers a value proposition that is a win for students, their families, faculty, and colleges. Flat World's textbooks are written by world-class authors. The company makes its books available as free web-hosted textbooks. It earns revenue and pays its authors royalties by providing students with options to purchase print-on-demand soft cover textbooks, audio textbooks, and self-print individual chapters at a fraction of the cost of traditional textbooks. The company enhances the learning experience by offering low-cost digital study aids like mp3 study guides, interactive web quizzes, and digital flashcards.

Faculty prefer the open-source approach employed by Flat World because it gives them more control over the classroom experience by enabling them to customize books to better suit their teaching style.

"The timing of this latest investment could not be better," said Jeff Shelstad, co-founder and chief executive officer of Flat World Knowledge. "In these uncertain economic times, we all are looking for the best value for our preferred products and services.

Administrators, parents, faculty, and students are very intrigued by and attracted to the value provided by the Flat World Knowledge model. With this further investment, we can continue to scale our sales and marketing activities, staff up our acquisition talent to attract more talented authors to Flat World Knowledge, and improve the overall experience for our customers. We are very grateful for the financial support of our investors."

About Valhalla Partners:
Valhalla Partners is a trusted partner and advisor to technology entrepreneurs in their quest to build world-class companies. Based in Vienna, Virginia, the firm's management team has made more than 120 investments over the past twenty years and produced almost $1 billion of investment proceeds. Valhalla prefers investments where the mission of the company is to innovate, challenge and fundamentally change the dynamics of new and existing markets. Investments by Valhalla's team include Advertising.com, BDMetrics, CareerBuilder.com, Clarify, EnterpriseDB, Epicor, Exchange Solutions, JumpTap, LeftHand Networks, Mobius, NextLink, Nirvanix, Progress Software, Proxicom, RealOps, Register.com, Riverbed Technologies, SafeNet, SEPATON, ServiceBench, Trilogy, and webMethods. Valhalla Partners brings the full power and network of its experienced team to every investment it makes, helping companies grow faster and smarter regardless of size or maturity.
For more information, go to http://www.valhallapartners.com.

About Flat World Knowledge:
Founded in 2007 by textbook publishing industry veterans Jeff Shelstad and Eric Frank, privately held Flat World Knowledge is a leading publisher of open textbooks for higher education. Flat World Knowledge's textbooks are written by the world's leading subject matter experts. The books are peer-reviewed and professionally edited and developed. The company then offers its textbooks as free webhosted textbooks to students and earns its revenue by providing students the option to purchase print-on-demand soft-cover textbooks, audio textbooks, and digital study aids, all at a fraction of the cost of traditional textbooks. Educators have the freedom to use the books as-is, or to reorganize and edit them to suit their unique classroom requirements. Flat World Knowledge backs its textbooks with an online social learning platform that allows students to learn from each other as well as from the book. More information about Flat World Knowledge is available on the Web at http://www.flatworldknowledge.com.

For more information, press only:
Dan Gordon
703-448-1400
dan (at) valhallapartners.com

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