The kindergarten to grade 12, (K-12) market in India accounts for a substantial share of the total education market. This segment is estimated to be worth INR 20 bn and is expected to be growing at 14% per annum. If you introduce the multimedia tools and Internet for imparting education, you can seize a large portion of this market, at a nascent stage. It is unarguably the most promising stage to venture with ideas in order to book long-term profits.
E-learning market in India is at nascent stage with tremendous growth opportunities. The market is estimated to be worth USD360 mn in 2008. The e-learning market [in this article] comprises of multimedia i.e. digital content in private schools, ICT program of Government for government schools and online education market.
The market leader of the e-learning market, Educomp Solutions’ robust revenue growth (on a reported basis) was mainly driven by a 61.5% year on year growth in the School Learning Solutions (SLS) Business, comprising of Smart Class and ICT Solutions (ICT). In addition to the aggressive expansion plans in the Smart Class Segment, the company is also investing a considerable amount in newer initiatives, in terms of expanding its On-line Supplementary business.
Taking credence from the market leader, it would be appropriate to draw conclusion that e-learning [or electronic learning which includes online, internet based learning and other multimedia methods] opens up opportunities for entrepreneurial ventures and investments.
The main niches created as opportunity pockets are:
- Multimedia and ICT products for classrooms in K-12 segment
This is in direct competition to the products provided by Educomp Solutions private Ltd., who is currently enjoying a monopoly. Their Smart Class Solution product has no competition at all which is worth mentioning.
- CBT [or Computer Based Tuition] for specific examination preparations such as entrance examinations for IIT-JEE, CAT [for IIMs], SAT, GRE, GMAT etc.
This is also a very lucrative niche, as most of the students seek quality coaching for some of these important examinations. There is a plethora of coaching institutes running in both Tier I and Tier II cities across India. But not many can guarantee the quality as getting and retaining good teachers is always a challenge. With the digitization of the content, the quality can be maintained to a great extent, as the dependency on teachers will reduce quite a bit. Internet penetration will help in scalability of online student enrollments, which is otherwise limited because of the limited space between the four walls of a classroom.
- Subject-wise tutoring portals
This niche is also predominantly ruled by Educomp Solutions. There maybe many other smaller players too in this niche segment, but the consistency and quality lags behind. Lower adaptation to the online tutoring has also been one of the factors for lesser number of players venturing in here. But with increasing Internet culture and more number of Internet-savvy caretakers of our children, it has become worthwhile to explore this niche segment of e-learning.
|About Mridula: Mridula is a freelance writer. She writes on Entrepreneurship and has worked for a start-up in the past. To know more check out her profile at LinkedIn/Mridula Velagapudi|