Industry Leaders Combine to Create Global Platform for Digital Credentials

    Credly acquires Pearson’s Acclaim as use of digital credentials accelerates, bridging transitions between education and employment, and transforming skill recognition and talent management
    March 12, 2024
    Adam Masur
    5 min read
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    NEW YORK, NY, April 12, 2018 — Pearson and Credly announced today that Credly will acquire Pearson’s Acclaim badging business in response to global demand for digital credentialing and talent recognition. Pearson will take a minority equity stake in Credly, and Mark Chernis SVP/Strategic Partnerships & Investments at Pearson will join Credly’s board of directors. The partnership between Acclaim and Credly brings two leading organizations together, and provides the most comprehensive solution suite for skill recognition, credential verification, and talent management.

    The combined organization will serve a global customer base, including millions of individuals; and enterprise leaders, education institutions, certification providers, and associations like IBM, Microsoft, the American Council on Education, the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA), and Southern New Hampshire University.

    “In the evolving world of work and learning, it has never been more important to have verifiable evidence of skills, capabilities, and achievements. The combination of these two organizations spans every global sector, from trade professions to healthcare to finance and tech, allowing organizations to better identify, cultivate, and recognize skills,” said Credly CEO and founder Jonathan Finkelstein. “The Acclaim team and technologies make us stronger--uniting in Credly’s mission to empower organizations to provide, and individuals to pursue, meaningful education and professional opportunities.”

    “Our decision to join forces with Credly reflects our belief that the growth opportunities in this marketplace are best addressed by an organization that combines the expertise of the two market leaders. We believe this gives our Acclaim investments the best opportunity for continued success and to provide value to all participants,” said Bob Whelan, president of Pearson Assessment.

    “Digital credentials are quickly becoming an important signal of employability for the modern workforce. That's creating a need for a trusted platform which makes it easy to share and broadcast skills -- and for employers to find the talent they need,” said David Leaser, Senior Program Executive, Innovation and Growth Initiatives at IBM.

    "Over the past four years, the Acclaim team has been dedicated to helping individuals tell their professional story online with verification and context. I am confident that by combining with Credly, our talented, passionate, creative teams will generate even more opportunities to positively impact the global workforce,” said Jarin Schmidt, now Chief Experience Officer at Credly.

    About Credly


    Credly ( is the leading digital credential service provider, helping the world recognize lifelong achievement with the most popular platforms for verifying, sharing, and managing digital credentials and badges. The enterprise-class system allows organizations to officially verify skills and competencies; distribute portable and secure digital credentials and open badges; and gain actionable data and insights. Thousands of education institutions, industry associations, employers, and workforce development programs use Credly to make achievements visible and help people tell the full story of their professional lives with verifiable information.


    About Pearson

    Pearson is the world’s learning company, with expertise in educational courseware and assessment, and a range of teaching and learning services powered by technology. Our mission is to help people make progress through access to better learning. We believe that learning opens up opportunities, creating fulfilling careers and better lives. For more, visit 

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