Winners can pitch for upto INR 3 crores in investment; bootcamp and mentoring for all applicants
April 12, 2016. Bangalore. Unitus Ventures (formerly Unitus Seed Fund) and Sylvant announced the fourth edition of StartEdu program to identify the most innovative and scalable education companies enabled by technology. In the last three editions, over 250 companies applied for StartEdu. In this edition, applicants will get access to bootcamp sessions and mentoring while the winners can pitch for investments of upto INR 3 crores.
According to a recent estimate from IBEF, the education market in India is worth $100 billion. India is expected to have the world’s largest tertiary-age population and second largest graduate talent pipeline globally by the end of 2020. The last decade has also seen a surge in edupreneurs who are leveraging the growth in digital technology to address the challenges of availability, accessibility & affordability of quality education thereby transforming fundamental building blocks of the sector.
One such example is LabInApp. Pavan Shinde, CEO LabInApp, wanted to bring in the wonder and curiosity of science alive through the world of 3D technology. Pavan said, “I created app based lab simulations and executed some pilots but I didn’t realize the kind of support that is needed to build a business around my product idea. That’s where StartEdu came in and help from Unitus Ventures (formerly Unitus Seed Fund) and Sylvant was invaluable in helping me scale my idea.”
For this edition of the program, TiE has been roped in as an outreach partner. The selected applicants will go through an intense bootcamp across multiple TiE chapters in various cities aimed at guiding the companies on their business and financial plans. 20 shortlisted companies will also get access to expert industry mentors from organizations such as S. Chand Publishers, Pearson Affordable Learning Fund (PALF), and Integra to finetune their growth strategies.
“We have invested in 5 education companies already: Hippocampus Learning Centres, iSTAR, Curiositi, Cue Learn and LabInApp” said Will Poole, managing partner at Unitus Ventures (formerly Unitus Seed Fund). “We are excited to partner with more innovative, scalable and impactful Education companies.”
“Sylvant has incubated and advised education companies including LodeStar, Guru-G, Littlemore Innovation Labs. We are delighted to partner with Unitus Ventures (formerly Unitus Seed Fund) in mentoring and scaling up education firms,” said Anand Sudarshan, Founder & Director at Sylvant Advisors.
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The 20 shortlisted companies will get 1:1 mentoring from Unitus Ventures (formerly Unitus Seed Fund) partners and experts who have rich domain-specific knowledge across different parts of Indian education sector:
- Srikanth Iyer (formerly CEO of Pearson India, founder HomeLane)
- Will Poole (Chairman of NComputing, co-founder VidyaNext)
- Madan Padaki (Co-founder MeritTrac, Co-founder& CEO of Head Held High)
- Anand Sudarshan (Founder Sylvant Advisors, Director at NIIT Limited, and former Vice-Chairman & MD of Manipal Global Education Services)
- Gaurav Jhunjhunwala and Vinay Sharma (S. Chand)
- Arvind Nagarajan (Director, Pearson Affordable Learning Fund)
- Mentors from TiE network