We recently got the opportunity to be a part of the Mock Board Meeting event organized by Village Capital as a part of their Education India: 2017 program. Village Capital is global venture capital firm that finds, trains, and invests in entrepreneurs solving real-world problems. They do this by building communities around entrepreneurs and their ventures to improve opportunities for growth and success.
Education India 2017 was an interesting event where select entrepreneurs, investors & mentors were brought together on a table to brainstorm some of the strategic & specific challenges being faced by the entrepreneurs while starting-up or scaling the business.
Each of the thoughtfully chosen start-up has been working on different parts of the ecosystem for addressing issues like enabling teachers for efficient education delivery & better evaluation of learning outcome, making learning more enjoyable for students by building interactive content & content gamification, helping education institutions manage themselves efficiently by using technology; and some entrepreneurs working towards providing niche solutions like Braille-based self-learning hardware for blind students. The common theme across the cohort of start-ups was their focus on finding tech-enabled solutions for improving the education outcome of K-12 students.
In the three teams where Sushant got an opportunity to participate, the discussion revolved around some of the strategic issues like positioning of the product as B2B ( selling to education institutes) or B2C(selling to students/parents), improving governance structure and building a resourceful team to seeking advice on specific issues like fund-raising, go-to-market strategy, different sales approaches for parents & education institutes, identifying right product pricing, and finding the balance between outsourcing and in-sourcing of the product development since most of the companies face resources crunch while starting-up..
Education is one of our focus sectors at Caspian Impact Investments. Our debt portfolio consists of all the major NBFCs providing credit support to education institutions, and few start-ups involved in education delivery with a focus on improving affordability & accessibility of education while maintaining quality and learning outcomes as a priority. While we cannot work with early stage companies that we met at the event, being a part of events like these enable us to share our inputs on how the companies can prepare themselves when they look at growth financing. It is also an opportunity for us to learn about the different ways in which entrepreneurs are looking to solve difficult problems. We do hope that in future, we will have the opportunity to work with some of the entrepreneurs we met at the event. We also hope to support others in the education ecosystem working towards a positive impact, by helping them scale-up through our debt fund. For further details, please check here.