Rosetta Stone acquires online language company Livemocha

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Arlington-based Rosetta Stone has acquired Seattle-based Livemocha, an online language-learning company, for $8.5 million in cash.

Rosetta Stone officials said that the move will aid its transition to cloud-based language learning solutions.

Livemocha has 16 million members and an extensive cloud-based learning platform.

“We are in the process of transforming Rosetta Stone to be the most dynamic and ubiquitous technology-based learning platform in the world,” Rosetta Stone President and CEO Steve Swad said in a statement. “Our acquisition of Livemocha will help accelerate that transformation. With Livemocha and its vibrant online community on our side, Rosetta Stone will reach more people and change more lives than ever before.”

Livemocha has members in 195 countries, including language experts, instructors and multi-linguists involved in teaching, learning and interacting online.

Rosetta Stone credits Livemocha with pioneering the use of crowd-sourcing to drive content development and social engagement in the realm of language learning.

Livemocha’s offices will remain based Seattle. Its CEO, Michael Schutzler, will assist in integration efforts as a senior adviser to Swad.

Rosetta Stone, founded in 1992 in Harrisonburg, offers interactive technology for courses in 30 languages. It posted a loss of $35.8 million on revenue of $273 million last year.

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