5 reasons (+1) why launching an edtech startup in India might be a great idea

What is edtech? The term covers a wide range of technological innovations, both hardware and software, that are suitable for delivering an enhanced learning experience for learners and educators alike. It covers everything from online learning platforms and learning management systems to leveraging emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning, virtual reality, augmented reality and gamification in e-learning.

There has been a mushrooming of  interest and investment in edtech startups in India in recent years. As we at Hornbill work with a number of edtech players, we thought we’d share our thoughts on why it may be a good idea to enter the edtech space at this time. 

A quick disclaimer, though, that we are not investment advisors – These are just our thoughts and observations, gathered from years in an allied industry.

1. Industry interest

Not everyone understands what the word “edtech” really means. However, there has been a huge influx of interest in the industry in the past few years. That means that the initial barriers to entry for investors, entrepreneurs and clients are low. The availability of investment and market interest make the decision to set up an edtech startup much easier. 

2. Availability of investment

Similar to the availability of industry interest from the general public, venture capitalists are showing considerable interest in investing in edtech startups. And that interest is only growing. In 2020, Indian edtech firms secured at least 59 deals, up over 100% from the previous year. In 2019, 28 deals were secured (source: Statista). The value of PE/VC investment is also increasing from year to year. A new edtech startup in an interesting niche could tap in on that existing interest.

3. Untapped and unique value propositions

Unless you’re simply selling smart whiteboards or overhead projectors for the classroom (technically, both would be considered edtech), chances are that the content you’re delivering is the differentiator for your edtech startup. By bringing together the latest in education technology and engaging e-learning content, you can offer unique value propositions for schools, colleges and training institutions. 

4. Unsaturated market

Despite the growing interest in the industry, we believe that the market is not yet saturated. While there are already four unicorns in the edtech/e-learning space, there is still considerable scope for growth. This is especially true in some spaces, such as e-learning apps that leverage gamification and game-based learning; engaging content that works for AR and VR; affordable AR and VR equipment; and others, primarily those that bring together technology and content optimally.

5. “Risk of becoming a billionaire!”

Benzinga put it best when they said that the biggest reason to launch an edtech startup today is that you “risk becoming a billionaire”! They advise a simple four-step process to get your edtech startup right:

  1. Study your selected domain to identify best and worst business practices
  2. Based on this analysis, create a strong business plan
  3. Reach out to private equity and venture capitalists to generate funding
  4. Create a minimum viable product

(+1) It’s easy to create great content with the right partner

So you’ve made your business plan, identified your value proposition, and even decided what platform works for you. How do you now create content that works for your platform and for your startup?

Ho-hum content is something that too many learning companies suffer from. The secret to avoiding this is to work with the right partner – that’s where Hornbill FX comes in. In our years of creating interesting content that increases engagement and improves learning outcomes, we’ve worked with numerous edtech startups to help them create content that’s balanced and suited to their selected audience, platform and tech.

If you’re embarking on a journey to build an edtech startup, we’d love to support you. Do reach out to us for more on how we can work together.