The growth of educational technology in India is worrying, or what will happen in the future?
Tomorrow September 5 is Teacher’s Day. After a pandemic has changed the way we view teaching for more than a year, don’t be surprised if online apps represent the future of teaching, at least for some people.
Weeks and months of pandemic restrictions have led to school closings and parents have been quick to find ways to supplement their children’s online courses. This has enabled India’s fledgling educational technology industry to make incredible progress; Estimates indicate that in the past In a year and a half, nearly 30 billion of funds flowed into the industry in the country, and big names like Byju have been strengthened under super gamma rays like the Hulk.
“Advancing technology and epidemics (already) has accelerated the digital transformation of the educational ecosystem in India,” Raghav Gupta, Managing Director (India and Asia Pacific) of Coursera, a leading multinational educational technology company, told The Weekly. . “An evolving ecosystem dedicated to addressing student needs and enabling institutions to provide more opportunities is the way forward for the country and the economy,” he added.
In addition to Think and Learn, three other Indian educational technology startups headquartered in Bangalore, Byju’s parent company, also obtained Exalted Unicorn status, or valued at US$1 billion (approximately Rs 7,500 crore) or higher: Unacademy, UpGrad and last month. , Scholars. At the same time, Big Daddy Byju has grown so fast that it was worth 1.2 billion rupees when it was last valued. Founder and CEO Byju Raveendran said earlier this week that the startup is only 10 years old and is expected to achieve a turnover of 10 billion rupees this year.
Not only that, Indian educational technology startups have been in a wave of expansion and integration, just like there is no tomorrow. Byju’s series of acquisitions include companies such as online competitor Toppr and Aakash, which was once the largest in the traditional coaching business.
However, the growing influence of Indian educational technology, which helped the Chinese government crack down on its learning platform, opened the door to German and Western upstarts in the field (Western companies realized the potential of this field later), also caused concerns that Indian educational technology companies are too close to the sun. Too, too fast to be comfortable? Online media and social media chats have recently spotted unethical business practices, such as fooling unsuspecting parents and the toxic marketing culture behind the active growth of some leading companies. What others are sure of is that many of the people who plunged into the educational technology gold rush will collapse and burn.
An industry analyst commented, “Of course, more education technology companies will fail than those that have achieved high valuations.” “How smart startups use growth areas will have a huge impact on where they are going.”
That’s a point. The high valuation and growth figures that the industry has been claiming not only stem from the huge potential of the Indian market, especially the growing desire of small Indian cities, but also room for overseas expansion. Some recent acquisitions of Indian educational technology companies involve foreign companies. Byju’s recently spent $ 500 million to acquire US digital reading platform Epic, while Eruditus acquired Silicon Valley startup iD Tech for $ 200 million. Many companies now have the majority of their users even outside of India.
Even within the scope of education, it is possible to target multiple fields. Although the initial focus was on providing supplementary training for school curricula, many educational technology companies are now targeting specific growth areas, from enrollment training to higher education.
“Although educational technology start-ups and unicorns have disrupted the K12, exam preparation, and continuous learning markets, services in higher education are still severely underserved,” Chinmoy Rajwanshi, co-founder and chief commercial officer of educational technology startup ImaginXP Said to target this niche market.
Although there are concerns that the government will boycott educational technology like China or social media and large-scale technologies in the same country, the main participants are still optimistic. Coursera’s Gupta pointed out: “Online learning has received a major boost from the national education policy, which promotes online education to achieve the 50% gross enrollment rate vision.”
The enthusiasm is so high that even mainstream players such as the principal have started to work. Sri Chaitanya, a leading education group operating in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and other places, recently launched a digital education platform by launching Infinity Learn. “We have been able to bring change to students in schools across the country. Infinity Learn CEO Ujjwal Singh explained that with the pandemic, we realized that they urgently needed this digital help and immediately joined forces to bridge the digital divide.