Startup Watchlist: Indian Edtech Startups To Look Out For In 2020

Between 2014 and 2019, a total of $1.802 Bn was raised by edtech startups across 303 deals

Edtech models such as language learning, B2B offerings, and specialised learning are expected to come to the fore this year

Which edtech startups have made it to our Startup Watchlist 2020?

This article is part of Inc42’s Startup Watchlist, an annual series in which we list the top startups to watch out for in 2020 from industries such as agritech, AI, logistics, healthtech, edtech and more.
Explore all the stories from the ‘Startup Watchlist’ 2020 series here.Despite boasting the largest higher education network in the world, the Indian education system has been in bad need of repairs for decades. For while higher education is more or less great and venerated around the world,
 primary or high school education remains a massive problem area in the context of public education. For private schools,
 the fees are prohibitive and often exclude communities. This leads to a lack of adequate skill training at the primary school level, leaving students ill-equipped for the challenges in the job environment.

As India prepares for a $1 Tn tech economy, it will rely on the world’s largest population under the age of 25 and the second-largest graduate talent pipeline. Just like in other sectors of the economy, the education sector in India offers serious potential for technology and disruption.
But this disruption will only be possible if edtech startups go beyond K12 education and test prep and focus on building the right skills among India’s young learners and young workers.

While literacy is growing steadily with the advent of digital life — the Census 2011 show India has a literacy rate of 74.04% as opposed to 64.80% in 2001 — the need of the hour is to help build skills in children, college-goers as well as working professionals for the tech economy.

The success of startups such as Byju’s, Vedantu and Toppr offers a mere glimpse of the potential in the sector. While these have focussed on school-level education and test prep, other models are yet to be explored fully. The long turn-around time for education technology to take off in India as compared to other tech sectors can be attributed to the bias of parents towards traditional means of education.
 However, numbers reflect that the trend seems to be changing.

Between 2014 and 2019, a total of $1.802 Bn was raised by edtech startups across 303 deals as data recorded by DataLabs by Inc42. In the context of total funding, Byju’s, Unacademy, Vedantu, Toppr and Eruditus emerged as the top-funded startups in India. Their combined funding contributed a whopping 80% ($1.38 Bn) to the total value of funding poured into edtech startups.

In 2019, the size of India’s education sector stood at $101 Bn and its online education market at $563 Mn. To put it into perspective, the country’s online education system comprised a mere 0.56% of the overall education sector.

KPMG projects a $1.96 Bn online education market opportunity in India by 2021 with key driving factors such as deeper penetration of the internet and smartphones, rising disposable incomes and the ever-growing demand for specialised learning (STEM) and reskilling.
 Startups are also tapping into the growing demand from educational institutions and coaching institutes, while also looking at language skills.

For 2020, Inc42 has curated a list of some edtech startups that are expected to make the biggest impact on the market, and have the potential to shine in the new year. Here are our picks:While many edtech startups are focussed on the end learners, some are looking to cater to businesses as well.
Founded in 2018, Classplus lets coaching institutes, tuition centres and private tutors to take their traditionally offline class management setups online with a mobile-first product.

Classplus takes a subscription fee from the coaching institutes for its software suite, which handles class communication, payments, assessments, online learning programmes and attendance.

 The product also doubles up as their online content repository and content distribution platform. It also enables tutors to set up ecommerce channels to make online learning programmes available to students outside their traditional network.

Classplus claims to have partnered with more than 1500 coaching institutes, spanning across more than 50 different cities. On the strategy for 2020, cofounder Mukul Rustagi told Inc42, “We aim to grow the product vertically deeper this year. Our mission is to integrate a tutor’s entire ecosystem on a single mobile platform and enable him to seamlessly take his business online.

 We aim to establish a strong presence in more than 100 Indian cities

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