The founder of MasterClass on his deep-seated love of education.
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David Rogier is the founder and CEO of MasterClass, the online learning platform where you can learn to shoot a basketball from Steph Curry, filmmaking from Martin Scorsese, or photography from Annie Leibovitz. MasterClass is high-quality, originally produced content, carrying classes from the biggest names in their respective industries. Like all incredible start-ups, the story of MasterClass is a fascinating one; it taps into David’s love of learning, risk-taking, and passion for entrepreneurship.
On his path to success, David Rogier was given an important constraint in building MasterClass: choose something you’ll be proud of, even if it fails.
Growing up in Los Angeles, David was brought up in a household that treasured the free exchange of ideas. Raised partially by his grandparents who survived the Holocaust, it was impressed upon him at a very early age that your education is the one thing people can’t take away from you. Knowledge is power.
This was a mantra that has stuck with David throughout his whole life. It propelled him to take risks, overcome personal challenges, and chase his own curiosity. But he also understood that to know, you have to be given an opportunity to learn.
And so, he set out with a purpose to create a platform that could democratize learning, believing that anyone, anywhere should have the opportunity to learn from the best.
Today, MasterClass is not only something to be proud of — it’s a feat. Never before has this type of access into the world’s most sought-after minds been cataloged or made available for the masses. David didn’t just disrupt online learning he created an entirely new category for lifelong learning. Built for the digital age and today’s modern learner, the online streaming platform features over 2,000 video lessons and 425 hours of content across a wide range of subjects taught by the world’s best minds.
With over 100 classes, David has achieved a scale of growth he never dreamed of before. However, when asked about the moment he felt success he mused, “I think we’re still in the first innings of it.” For David, the role of an entrepreneur and CEO changes all the time, but he’s found that, most importantly, it’s about always looking around the bend at what’s next. So what is on the horizon for MasterClass? Building on the brand’s founding mission to increase access to life-long learning opportunities to anyone, anywhere including plans for international expansion and new audiences, including underserved communities like the company’s recent partnership with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the New York City Department of Corrections at Rikers Island.