A conversation with Sophia Spencer, co-founder of the adult learning platform: Learned.Live


I co-founded Brighton-based Learned.Live with my partner, Johnathan Reynolds in the summer of 2020. It is the UK’s first online learning platform to offer students interactive courses live on a wide range of subjects using Zoom.

Classes range from the weird and the wonderful, such as circus skills and scuba diving, to business management and career development. We welcome talented people from all walks of life as long as they are willing to educate and share their skills in any subject they wish.

The key thing for us that makes Learned.Live stand out is that it’s real time. This means that there are no recorded sessions but live and fully interactive lessons, just like a real classroom.

How did you come up with the idea for the business?

Before the lockdown restrictions, Johnathan had run three entertainment companies, including a global agency of performance artists. We created the online platform Learned.Live after the first lockdowns forced all of its businesses to be put on hiatus. Due to Covid, Jo’s reservations were canceled overnight, which was a huge blow to us.

As we turned to teaching her circus and business skills online, we soon realized that there was a huge demand for e-learning among all age groups and hence the idea of ​​Learned.Live was born. I had already been running my own business, Callisto Associates since 2011, so I quickly jumped in to help get Learn.Live off the ground.

We wanted to create something that allows people to live the life they really want. I wanted to create something that was entirely dedicated to the nomadic yet digital lifestyle that we crave so much today. My vision was to support the hybrid workplace to allow more freedom for students and teachers. It’s a really personal vision that Jo and I share. It’s exciting to think that we’ve started a business where a teacher can teach, or a student can learn a new skill on a beach in Indonesia or on a mountain top in the Alps.

How has the business evolved during the pandemic?

It’s fair to say that Learned.Live has thrived on the pandemic restrictions, and I’m proud to say that the lockdown drew some very creative ideas into me. Learned.Live opened the door to interactive learning where so many others had been closed during lockdown.

I wonder if Learned.Live would have worked so well if it hadn’t been born out of the pandemic. Sometimes it takes a challenge as dramatic as Covid 19 to trigger something with such a goal.

What can we expect to see from Learned.Live in the future?

Our vision is to see Learned.Live become the “Google Live” of the future. It is my dream to see education accessible to all. No matter where in the world someone is, they can learn a new skill, a new language and have access to professional advice anytime, anywhere. Learned.Live is designed to let you learn your way.

It will be my legacy. Not just something to leave for my kids, but something that we both can look at and say, ‘we did it’. As a female entrepreneur, I strive to leave that behind the world for the world to benefit from.

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