Duolingo, Inc., a mobile learning platform, announced it has acquired Gunner, a design and animation studio based in Detroit. Duolingo uses animation in its learning apps to drive engagement, keep learners motivated, and build its globally recognized brand.

“We know that the hardest thing about learning a language, or any new subject, is staying motivated and that’s why we make Duolingo fun,” says Luis von Ahn, Co-founder and CEO of Duolingo. “Art and animation are foundational to the Duolingo brand, and we use them to help make Duolingo a beloved daily habit in millions of learners’ lives.”

Gunner has been a animation and design partner for Duolingo since 2020 and produces art and animations that show up in Duolingo’s flagship language app and early childhood literacy app, Duolingo ABC. The studio also produces elements of Duolingo’s brand marketing campaigns. The acquisition of Gunner will add fifteen new world-class designers, illustrators, and animators to Duolingo’s existing design teams.

“Gunner is a world-class illustration and animation studio that we’ve worked with for years, and they know our brand well,” says Bob Meese, Chief Business Officer of Duolingo. “Animation brings life to Duo, our iconic brand mascot, and to our cast of characters. It helps make our products great, and our characters memorable. We love Gunner and are thrilled to welcome their whole team to Duolingo.”