A SALTAIRE-based online teaching service is continuing its global expansion by starting up in schools in Japan.

Titus Learning, based in Salts Mill, Victoria Road, provides teachers with an online system to share learning resources and homework with their students.

It can be accessed through laptops or mobile apps and also reports students’ grades to their parents. It covers a number of subjects including English, maths and science.

Titus Learning is used by hundreds of thousands of users in English-speaking international schools in 13 countries including India, China and now Japan.

It also hopes to further expand across the Middle East, the USA and South America over the next 12 months.

The start-up business was set up by Sebastian Francis, 26, and Mike Bennett, 35, in December 2013.

They spotted a gap in the market for an online learning platform for teachers to use in international schools.

They were helped through a £10,000 low-interest loan from the government-supported Start Up Loans Company. It was used to cover initial start-up costs in their first few months of trading and pay for Mr Francis and Mr Bennett’s wages.

The company now employs six full-time members of staff and six contractors. It hopes to appoint two new members of staff by the end of this year.

Mr Francis said: “Mike and I are both thrilled with the progress that’s been made over the past few years.

“We always knew that what we’ve achieved was possible, but to see it come to fruition is really rewarding.

“The fact that we have a customer base spanning 13 countries and are in a great position in terms of growth rates makes all the hard work worth it.”

He added: “Our idea was borne out of a dream to offer a system and service that specifically met the needs of international schools.

“Having made great progress within the international sector, we’re now applying some of the lessons learnt to our UK customer base.

“We needed help getting the business off the ground in the early days.

“That’s where the Start Up Loans Company came in - they provided us with a low-interest loan and assigned us a mentor to schools us through the ‘start-up’ process.”

Tim Sawyer, chief executive of Start-up Loans Company, hailed the firm’s success.

He said: “Titus Learning is expanding rapidly and it’s a real testament to their hard work and determination right from the start.

“Creating a business based on an online platform isn’t easy, it requires a great level of technical attention to detail to ensure processes run smoothly and efficiently. But it’s clear that this duo have succeeded.”

The Start-Up Loans Company provides personal loans of up to £25,000 for businesses. It also offers free dedicated mentoring and support to each firm.

The aim of its scheme is to make sure start-ups and early-stage firms have access to the finance and support they need to thrive.