In 2023, Indian EdTech must rise and shine again.
2022 was a tough year for the majority of education technology (EdTech) in India, with the “Tracxn Geo Annual Report: India Tech 2022” reporting a 39 per cent decrease in funding during the January-November period compared to 2021. To overcome this, many businesses, including industry-leading players like BYJU’S, Unacademy and Vedantu, had to resort to job cuts. However, as we enter 2023, there are several methods that EdTech firms can employ to recover from last year’s travails and stand again as a victorious industry.
Delivering better learning outcomes with hybrid learning
Becoming increasingly popular, hybrid learning combines online and in-person learning. The CEO and Founder of BrightCHAMPS, Ravi Bhushan, sees it as the future of education technology and believes many companies will soon adopt it. His firm plans to develop a hybrid model for its courses and open two offline centers in Vietnam by early 2023.
Similarly, BYJU’S had already made a head start with its BYJU’S Tuition Centers (BTCs) in 2019 to offer hybrid classes. The BTCs have seen tremendous growth since the company launched its first BTCs in 2022. BYJU’S now plans to open at least 250 more BTCs as well as 250 Aakash BYJU’S centers (which offer courses for medical and engineering entrance exams in India) in 2023.
By combining the benefits of online classes with the human connection of traditional instruction, hybrid learning can offer flexibility and a personalized learning experience. It also enables teachers to utilize technology to improve their teaching and interact with students in different ways. Because of its multiple advantages, hybrid learning is rapidly gaining traction worldwide.
Shifting towards profitability from high valuations
Value-based business models have been crucial for Indian EdTech businesses such as BYJU’S and Unacademy. In 2022, it became clear that high value alone would not sustain long-term growth. For example, BUJU’S, the world’s most valuable EdTech business, has come under fire for financial concerns, suspected false tactics and enormous layoffs. Despite this, Founder Byju Raveendran is confident about a brighter 2023 as significant strategic changes are made. “We are fast moving towards a sustainable long-term year of growth with strong fundamentals,” said Raveendran.
Losing money indefinitely is simply not feasible for any company, so prioritizing profitability over valuation must take place to make Indian EdTech firms financially resilient and enable them to grow steadily over time.
Integrate the right technology
Technology is the backbone of any EdTech startup, especially in India, where the education sphere is continuing to develop. It can be tempting to incorporate multiple technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR) and gamification without a plan or direction, which could result in failures, as with Metaversity.
This EdTech startup garnered great attention upon its debut in 2021. Yet, it announced its shutdown in May 2022 because the company was unable to master Web3 technology. Manish Maheshwari (former Twitter India Chief) and Tanay Pratap (ex-Microsoft senior engineer) co-founded the venture, which sought to meld together EdTech with web3. According to Maheshwari, the technical issues ultimately resulted in their failure prior to even launching their product.
When choosing what technology to incorporate into your EdTech products, it is thus vital to consider compatibility with your existing infrastructure and the ease of integration into your current offerings. Consult an expert if you are unsure whether a particular technology will work well with your app.
Focus on affordability
Many students in India come from low-income families and cannot afford expensive courses or private tutoring. By offering affordable products and services, EdTech can make education more accessible to a larger audience.
There are a number of EdTech companies in India that are already doing this. For example, ConveGenius provides personal assessments and supplementary classes for homeschooling via existing apps like WhatsApp, which can be accessed under low connection speeds with 2G/3G. Similarly, Eduauraa offers services through its app, website or even Zee5 (an Indian subscription video-on-demand and over-the-top streaming service), with subscription packages at budget-friendly prices. Making quality education affordable will not only benefit students but also contribute to India’s overall economic progress.
With these priorities firmly in place, India can make great strides toward becoming a leader in the global EdTech market in 2023.
- Why India’s Ed-Tech Startups Are Shrinking
- How COVID-19 Has Accelerated Edtech’s Adoption
- Indian Live Online Tutoring Platform Vedantu Raises US$100M Series D
- How to Start an EdTech Company in 2022
- These Top-Funded APAC Edtech Companies Raised US$2B This Year
- Tech Downturn: Why Silicon Valley Is Dealing with a Slew of Layoffs
- Top 6 Indian Startups Layoff Stories in 2022
- Edtech in India: Do Our Students Deserve Better?
Header image courtesy of Freepik