The edtech sector was doing well for long before the pandemic hit the entire global structure and that is the time when everything became virtual, even schools. It was difficult for the edtech startups to face the challenges of the pandemic. However, with the expectation that the education sector will permanently change to online learning, investors started fling money at edtech startups.
How edtech startups are surviving in the Covid-19 pandemic? Let’s find out the scale-up stories of some edtech startups to know how it has shaped expansion plans looking ahead.
Challenges Faced by Edtech Startups
Brainly- The switch from offline to online schooling was very tough for Brainly. But it experienced a huge usage in India, Indonesia, and Brazil. That’s where the company saw most of its growth during the pandemic. Much of the growth in online education came from parents. While Brainly faced an initial fall in usage at the beginning of lockdowns, as people were worried about how the pandemic would go, that usage quickly boomeranged and has continued to be strong even after schools reopened.
GoStudent- Providing online teaching is an attractive opportunity especially for those who were searching for remote jobs in the pandemic. So, the startup faced more applications from the teacher’s side. But from the parent’s side, there was less search for tutorial services because during the pandemic there was less pressure and fewer exams in school. This resulted in an increase in expenses to acquire new customers for the company.
Ironhack- It is a Spain-based startup that had to switch from offline to online education immediately. The company emphasized training teachers in the evenings so that they can teach the next day. However, this gave them the opportunity to start a remote campus.
In Spite of such experiences faced by the edtech startups, neither Brainly nor GoStudent had to adapt its business model to go hand in hand with the pandemic. However, the Spain-based startup, Ironhack, plans to put physical augmentation on hold and focus on introducing new business lines like creating remote courses to train larger numbers of people.
What are the Strategies for Edtech Startups to Adapt to the Post Pandemic Crisis?
There are some basic benchmarks that the edtech companies need to emphasize when they are introducing new markets. The first thing that an edtech startup should do is to find out the countries with the highest populations around the world and good internet facilities.
Another thing is to get a clear vision of whether the country is worth enough to launch a business line. For example, in countries like Finland, the search volume for tutorial services is very low, it will not be worth it to start a business in those countries. On the other hand, countries like Italy have a high volume of searches and also high spendings, so it is better to go with Italy rather than Finland.
Once a company begins to extend the market again in post-pandemic, it will then be able to modify its strategy and aim at the second and third cities, where it already has a strong brand and relationships with governments and companies.
After choosing a country the second task for a startup is to find the right staff to help it succeed in a new country. It is about employing the right people. Hiring great country managers, who tend to be more senior people and flexible to develop an operational team in each country should be a priority for every edtech company. You cannot be in the country for 27/7, therefore you need to choose people who can serve your presence trustfully.