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An Interview with the Founders of Edutative

1 year ago

Interviews

Edutative is the new educational startup in town that aims to be the LinkedIn for Education in Pakistan. It aims to provide a platform for Pakistani students to choose the universities of their choice.

1. Why did you choose this field for your startup?

We at Edutative have always known that good education is the only way to success and fulfillment. Being fresh graduates ourselves, we believe that the four years of undergrad were critical in the grooming, personal development and personality formation of an individual. We were always extremely passionate about the idea that what if we could predict in advance how college is going to be? We know that college is extremely important and students want to be placed in colleges where they learn, excel and have fun and make many good memories. We believe choosing a college, a majors and a university is as important as choosing a person to marry. A wrong choice can really screw your life. So we came up with Edutative.com which is a web platform that provides correct, reliable and abundant information to students in order to empower them to make informed decisions.

2. How does Edutative plan to make revenue?

We are operating on a fremium model. Most of the information on our site is free. For example a student can search, compare and contrast different universities, view their profile which includes real time pictures of all the facilities, read about the academic and social environment through our well researched review section and get insights about the future prospects and career opportunities available to the graduates of a certain school. A student can basically just type their interests in their Edutative profile and get updates about scholarships, exchange programs, events and much more in a personalized manner. This is what they pay an extremely small amount for.   They basically pay for saving all their time, getting personalized updates about opportunities that they may otherwise miss and mostly for making their lives simple and easy.

3. How do you plan to beat your competitors?

We believe that the Education space is a niche that is largely untouched as of now. There are other businesses operating in the same space such as ILM ki Dunya and Uninama, but their ideas and vision is quite different than that of ours. We are planning long term, we plan expand to India and Bengal in the coming years and then our vision is not to just make portals and cheaply monetize them but to enable people to make informed decisions and lead them to success and self-fulfillment in their lives. We are not looking at a commodity or a product but a real value that we want to add to people’s lives. And this we believe is our unique selling point.

4. What’s the response so far that you guys are getting?

Edutative is going to be the biggest platform for education sector in Pakistan. All the HEC recognized universities are a part of our network. We will soon be catering to the needs of 6 million high schools and university students in Pakistan. We are expecting more than 100,000 users daily on our website.

5. What’s your target market?

Answer 5: We are targeting at students between the ages of 17 and 23, which means these students are either in their A-levels or enrolled in an undergrad program because we believe that this is the market which really can benefit from Edutative initially. We want to empower A-levels or equivalent students to make the right decision while choosing a university. We want the undergrad students to broaden their skill set, be exposed to opportunities, go on scholarship programs and exchanges and come out as polished, positively exposed and emotionally intelligent people. We have chosen this market because it aligns with our vision to begin with.

6. Do you think that Pakistan will have enough demand for this product/service in the next 5 years?

We are serving a very basic need of education sector. There is no medium through which Pakistani students can keep track of hundreds of admissions, scholarships and internship opportunities and get consultancy about their career. There is a big gap to be filled. We conducted a research in 80 colleges of Rawalpindi and 15 universities. 80% of the students who had internet access loved our profiling system and rated it 5 out of 5. By 2019, the total number of internet users in Pakistan will be 90 Million; thrice as much as of 2015. By these statistics we expect that at full potential the number of daily users on our website and mobile application will be more than 500,000 after three years.

7. Have you raised any investment yet?

We got our seed funding from an Expatriate living in Dubai. Foreigners and expatriates are more likely to invest in innovative tech startups that are scalable. Edutative has developed collaborate links with USAID, USEFP and US state department. We are starting off with Pakistani market however, after a year we will start expanding to include foreign institutions in our portal. At that time we will raise foreign investment for expanding into other countries.

8. Who does your team consist of?

Muhammad Ahmed

Muhammad Ahmed

Hira Irshad

Hira Irshad

Hassan Shahid

Hassan Shahid

Currently we are three co-founders (Hira Irshad, Hassan Shahid, Muhammad Ahmed) and four employees. Hassan Shahid is apart from Edutative is also running the first of its kind co-working space in Lahore called Kick Start. Hira Irshad is the program manager for MIT Enterprise Forums Pakistan under the leadership of Dr. Umar Saif. Muhammad Ahmed is also working with one of the leading websites of Pakistan ‘Pak Wheels’ as Product Executive. Our employees are fresh graduates and the reason for this is that we want to build our own culture and we want to train our employees well. We also have a team of 25 campus ambassadors. Campus ambassadors work voluntarily but they are integral part of the nationwide Edutative network. They manage their respective university profiles and answers queries of students about university, application process and degree requirements. We plan to expand our network of campus ambassadors to all the cities of Pakistan. Currently we do have problem of managing campus ambassadors. Soon we are organizing our whole network as well. We are hiring our regional heads who will then manage and recruit new campus ambassadors. We have divided entire country into 7 regions. Every regions will have its local team of volunteers who will also organize small events and counselling sessions in various institutes.

The writer is a digital media scientist, a technology buff and a cultural writer. Catch her on Twitter @mehreen_omer

PakWired.com is all about business, technology, and the startup culture in Pakistan. If you have an interest in e-commerce, telecommunications, or general business and technological advancements, you’ll love PakWired.

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