In 1999, Jeremy Cummings and his wife welcomed a new baby. Jeremy's wife speaks Spanish and Jeremy wanted to learn the language too so he could speak it with their new baby. So he enrolled in a class, but found when he needed to look up a word, there was no easy-to-use online Spanish-English dictionary. Paper dictionaries, meanwhile, cost $20-30, were slow to use, and weren't helpful with pronunciation. So he and his wife decided to launch SpanishDict, one of the first online Spanish-English dictionaries to offer native speaker audio pronunciations. After launching the company, Jeremy brought on his brother Chris to serve as CEO.
Chris Cummings, CEO
How Curiosity Media is helping millions of people learn Spanish and English
One major differentiator of SpanishDict is that it's always been free. "From the start we offered our site for free and used ads to earn ad revenue," says Chris Cummings, CEO of Curiosity Media. "Ads made our business possible and Google has always been an essential partner. By making SpanishDict ad-supported, we're able to welcome Spanish learners of all economic backgrounds and open access to millions of students and teachers. And ad revenue has been the basis for us to make investments in the site to make it an awesome learning experience."
SpanishDict sees hundreds of teachers sign up every day, turning to their translations, conjugations, lessons and tips to share with students. "And we get great feedback from students as well," says Chris. "I've had students write in saying that they got an A in their class or that our site has been indispensable as they try to learn Spanish. It's a really great feeling."
Throughout the pandemic, with so much of learning moving online, SpanishDict saw a major uptick in traffic and was able to help support students and teachers navigate how to learn a language remotely. "We put a lot of care into the site and strive for accuracy and helpful, engaging features," Chris says. "Seeing how many people turned to rely on SpanishDict during the pandemic was a great moment for our business -- to know that we're helping people learn." SpanishDict is also helping people develop a passion for Spanish and uplevel their skills. "We try to inject our lessons with the vibrancy of the Spanish-speaking cultures," Chris says "It's about embracing a new culture and fostering a Spanish-speaking community."