If India is to realize its dream of becoming a developed country in the near future, educating its population and making them contributing citizens will be of paramount importance. India has the advantage of youth on its side with more than 50% of the population below 25 years of age but this can become a potent force only if shaped properly. Education needs to be widespread as well as pervasive. Alongwith strong support from the government, startups in the sector will play a huge role and to recognize these efforts, Yourstory.in in association with Accel Partners conducted Edustars over the past 4 months.
Some very interesting startups applied in various capacities in the education sector and here's how the breakup looks like:
Meant on for early stage startups who hadn't raised institutional funding before, Edustars was sponsored by Pearson Education. Intel Appup was the prize sponsor and MIT Enterprise Forum was the supporting partner. Out of the 200+ startups that applied, the following were chosen as the Edustars (in alphabetic order):
BrainNookDeveloped by Nunook Interactive, BrainNook helps children develop Math and English skills while being immersed in a fun, competitive online game experience. Believing that games have the potential to help children learn in a way that's not possible with other, less interactive media, BrainNook is trying to realize that promise.
Founder: Abhi Vijayakar
Target Market: Predominantly Schools in US
An information technology solutions company, DreamNotion seeks to provide products that transform one’s everyday environment into a more prolific atmosphere providing psychological incentives to drive performances. To solve a problem in the education sector, DreamNotion has built a social learning platform, XPlore. Adapting to to what students what and like, XPlore gives an option to provide students with education in a manner they understand the best.
Founders: Karan Sachdev and Sandeep Kelvadi
Target Market: Pivoted from K12 to Coaching Classes; The informal Education Sector
Starting up as a web design firm, Foradian now delves into web application development, robotics, education and healthcare sectors. Their product, Fedena, is a multipurpose school/campus management software which is used by thousands of educational institutions worldwide for all administration and management related activities. It helps one manage student, teacher databases and all other activities online.
Founders: 8 Founders (Unni Koroth, Abdul Hisham)
Traction: 40,000+ schools, 2 million+ students
A very early stage startup, Harnesstouch is pioneering a new learning operating system called Touch-on-Cloud, which is an innovation extending from the hardware to the software layer. The operating system will harness the tablet revolution, the promise of the cloud and the combined power of human and digital content.
Founders: Subramanian Viswanathan and Kuljit Chadha (12 people)
Traction: 2 Paying customers
On a mission to make books interactive, engaging and fun, MangoReader has an ambition to not only redefine books and publishing, but reinventing the way people learn. On MangoBooks, students and readers can read, comment, take notes, answer quizzes, search, look up dictionary and share with friends. Multiple features have been included.
Founder: Jagdish Repaswal (Team of 10)
Traction: 4000 schools and pilot with IIM-A (40 books created till now)
Oliveboard is an adaptive learning platform that personalizes education for every individual. Oliveboard adapts test preparation material to an individual student's needs and creates unique customized learning modules by analyzing student data across hundreds of data points including subject, concept, difficulty level, along with the student's preferred learning format, pace etc.
Founder: Abhishek Patil (3 member team)
Launch: August 2012
Redbytes software is a company engaged in delivering high quality user experiences on the mobile platform. Working closely with schools and publishers, Redbytes deliver learning solutions primarily in the education sector. Branded as TinyTapps, the apps are targeted towards kids in the 2-6 age group.
Founder: Altaf Rehmani (20 People Team)
Traction: 1,75,000+ downloads (35 apps focused on toddlers)
SHArP Edge Learning
SHArP Edge Learning is a holistic learning concept which aims at addressing various levels of human learning capabilities and enhances individual growth. It combines technology, real life knowledge, industry experience, individual skills and group skills with university specific course content to address the growing gap between ‘regular’ engineers and ‘real’ engineers.
Founders: Mohit Agrawal, Paresh Gupta, Arpit Mehta, Sourabh Gupta and Harshit Gupta (80 members)
Traction: 42 colleges across India
Website: SHArP Edge
Top 3 Winners:
MangoReader, Foradian and Harnesstouch!
Download the Edustars 2012 Report. [Thank You Accel, Pearson, IntelAppUp and MITEFblr ]
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