Learntron, a learning technology start-up with tech operations in Chennai and sales operations in Mumbai, has raised an undisclosed Pre-Series A round from Mumbai-based Kae Capital, one of India’s leading seed funds.
Learntron is founded by serial entrepreneurs Subbu and Kuljit, who exited their previous ed-tech previous venture to a European education fund. They have applied their learnings from their previous venture to Learntron, which was already funded by 7 angels, most of whom were investors in their previous venture.
Subbu, CEO and Co-Founder, an alum of IIT-Madras, ISB and McKinsey, said “We are happy to partner with Kae Capital, which really understands how start-ups are built, in our investment journey. Conventional wisdom says do not invest in ed-tech companies. We are a unique company in that we cater to education and corporate, focusing on learning as a core theme. While learning is the core of the education sector, enterprises are starting to realise that learning can be a strategic organisational lever that can improve business performance. And the tenets of a good learning platform are the same for both education and corporate.”
Kuljit, COO and Co-Founder, also an alum of ISB and having worked with start-ups like Cleartrip and consulting companies like E&Y said “Brick and mortar educational institutions are looking at new delivery models for learning. Online learning companies are becoming mainstream and there are no limits to what you can learn online. Now, enterprises are also looking at mobile learning as a key driver of productivity. We have a unique platform that can cater to the learning needs of both education and enterprise.”
Learntron is conceived as a platform company and they will not develop any content. Says Subbu, “There are many content companies out there and they are specialising in specific segments like technology, test prep, K-12 foundations, language learning and so on. We have built a versatile platform that makes all of these content companies our potential customers and not competitors”.
The USPs of the Learntron platform include how they have brought the latest learning design principles like bite-sized learning, social learning, gamification and micro-learning and created a solid, feature-rich product. A key element of Learntron is live learning which works in low-bandwidth conditions. “We have reinvented the virtual classroom experience to make it activity-based and interactive, as opposed to boring screen-share webinars. Our technology is resilient and works in bandwidth as low as 100 kbps, which despite the 4G revolution, is the reality of internet infrastructure in India.”, said Kuljit.
“What we saw in Learntron was a productivity enhancement and engagement product with global appeal and a clear validation of product-market fit”, said Shubhankar Bhattacharya, Venture Partner at Kae Capital. “To us, this is a direct outcome of Subbu and Kuljit’s shared journey as serial entrepreneurs in the learning space and we are very proud to be early investors in Learntron.”
Learntron’s customers in enterprise include the Mahindra Group, Britannia, Scope International and Delhivery and its education customers include TalentEdge, DPS Doha, Birla Schools Kolkata and GD Goenka Schools.
Learntron has recently launched sports courses in partnership with Baseline Ventures, the sports management firm that manages P V Sindhu’s and Ravindra Jadeja’s endorsements. In this arrangement, Baseline gets the faculty and Learntron manages the technology and delivery.
Learntron’s focus is on the developing Asia market and the company has a good base in the Middle East. “We have built a good network of partners in the Middle East. We have also entered the Thailand market and will be expanding to other markets in Asia soon. ” said Kuljit.