Leading Digital Accessibility Platform drives Greater Inclusion of People with Disabilities
TORONTO & NEW YORK – (BUSINESS WIRE) – May 26, 2021 – KKR today announced a $55 million investment in eSSENTIAL Accessibility (“eA” or the “Company”), the pioneering provider of Accessibility-as-a-Service. As the digital divide for people with disabilities expands and the number of companies facing Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-related litigation continues to skyrocket, eA’s digital accessibility platform addresses the growing demand for a comprehensive, sustainable solution.
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“As our dependency on digital connection increases, inclusive experiences have never been more critical – a need we are laser-focused on addressing,” said Mark Steele, Co-Founder and CEO at eSSENTIAL Accessibility. “This financial and strategic support from KKR will enable us to scale our technology, processes and human expertise even faster, meeting the increasing demand for accessible online content and better supporting our customers’ commitments to disability, equality and inclusion programs.”
It is estimated there are more than 1.7 billion websites and mobile apps today, with 500,000 new websites created daily. Yet the vast majority contain barriers for individuals with disabilities, contributing to the rising number of legal claims against companies that have yet to solve this problem. eSSENTIAL Accessibility’s platform provides the tools, technology and training needed to fix accessibility from design to code, ensuring online equality against the backdrop of more than one billion people worldwide who are living with a disability.
Through a comprehensive platform of software and tech-enabled services, eSSENTIAL Accessibility is an end-to-end solution that ensures digital assets, such as websites, mobile applications, and software products, offer a seamless online user experience for individuals with disabilities. This helps organizations achieve and maintain compliance with applicable regulatory requirements through conformance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).
“eSSENTIAL Accessibility provides companies with a complete platform of technology capabilities, user experience design and DevOps integrations, subject matter experts, legal guidance and training, helping them become truly accessible to people with disabilities,” said Ben Pederson, Principal at KKR.
Jake Heller, Head of KKR’s Technology Growth team in the Americas, added: “We are thrilled to be investing in eA and look forward to leveraging KKR’s network and resources to support the company’s growth and expansion.”
KKR is making its investment through its Next Generation Technology Growth Fund II, a global fund dedicated to growth equity investments in the technology space.
About eSSENTIAL Accessibility
eSSENTIAL Accessibility is the smarter way to digital accessibility and legal compliance. As the leading Accessibility-as-a-Service platform, it enables brands to empower people by helping them deliver inclusive web, mobile, and product experiences that comply with global regulations and ensure that people of all abilities have equal access. Learn more at www.essentialaccessibility.com.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that offers alternative asset management and capital markets and insurance solutions. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people and supporting growth in its portfolio companies and communities. KKR sponsors investment funds that invest in private equity, credit and real assets and has strategic partners that manage hedge funds. KKR’s insurance subsidiaries offer retirement, life and reinsurance products under the management of The Global Atlantic Financial Group. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds and insurance subsidiaries. For additional information about KKR & Co. Inc. (NYSE: KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com and on Twitter @KKR_Co.
For eSSENTIAL Accessibility:
Cara Major or Miles Radcliffe-Trenner