Posted on September 3, 2019 by staff

Swindon entrepreneur sells firm to world chess champion


A Swindon entrepreneur’s online chess education platform has been sold to Norwegian chess grandmaster Magnus Carlsen’s firm Play Magnus AS.

Chessable, launched in 2016 by CEO David Kramaley, is an online platform teaching chess through video tutorials, interactive demonstrations and books.

Kramaley finished his dissertation on expertise and expert performance as part of a MSc in Psychology of Education (BPS) at the University of Bristol, and also holds a PGCert in Applied Psychology from the University of Liverpool.

Chessable raised £100k in funding in 2017 and celebrated 50,000 members in January of 2019.

Carlsen’s Play Magnus, with 11m monthly active users, was founded in 2014. Its app allows users to play against a chess bot which is said to simulate the world champion’s own playing style at differing levels of difficulty.

Carlsen became World Chess Champion in 2013 by defeating Viswanathan Anand, but was a World Under 12 Chess Champion Shortly after turning 13.

“The team is filled with joy, but we all also know a lot of work remains to be done,” wrote Kramalye, also the Chessable’s chief Scientist, in a blog post.

“We’ve challenged ourselves to continue to make Chessable better and better. We have big dreams and are working hard to realise them. We are working on Android and iOS apps, as well as a new web-app.

“We are working on a redesign of the site. We are launching amazing courses and continually improving their user-friendliness.”

The firm said that Chessable will remain the same for the foreseeable future but is expecting a redesign to its website, and expects early versions of its apps to be available in a few months following the new investment.

The exact details of the deal were not disclosed.