Certified engineers Dibakar Dutta, Bhaskar Jyoti Dutta, Manash Boruah, and chartered accountant Pravakar Dutta  co-founded Gyan Panda with an initial self-investment of Rs 80,000
Certified engineers Dibakar Dutta, Bhaskar Jyoti Dutta, Manash Boruah, and chartered accountant Pravakar Dutta co-founded Gyan Panda with an initial self-investment of Rs 80,000|File Image
ASSAM

How 4 entrepreneurs are changing the landscape of online education using Assamese language

With Gyan Panda recording an average rating of 4.5 stars, over 500 daily downloads and more than 18,724 students using the app daily, the company is certainly cruising to great heights

Pritisha Borthakur

Ed-tech start-up, Gyan Panda is moving a step further in the search for solutions to the language needs of students of Assam. As the very first mobile learning app in Assam, Gyan Panda has paved the way for other start-ups to introduce their own brands of learning apps. With over 50,000 downloads, it is currently the most sought-after learning app on Play Store in the region.

Co-founded by four young enthusiasts; certified engineers Dibakar Dutta, Bhaskar Jyoti Dutta, Manash Boruah, and chartered accountant Pravakar Dutta, with an initial self-investment of Rs 80,000, Gyan Panda, ever since its launch in October 2019, has witnessed a steady increase in patronage. With the app recording an average rating of 4.5 stars, over 500 daily downloads and more than 18,724 students using the app daily, the company is certainly cruising to great heights, establishing itself as the most preferred learning tool in Assam.

The other members of the team include seven certified teachers and two employees, with the total manpower set at thirteen.

The app provides features like necessary study materials, video lectures (which are available round the clock to students), Assamese interpretation, and doubt clearing through the app within 24 hours
The app provides features like necessary study materials, video lectures (which are available round the clock to students), Assamese interpretation, and doubt clearing through the app within 24 hours

This mobile app, in many ways, is the solution to many problems faced by students in Assam. With several important features incorporated to facilitate a smooth learning experience, Gyan Panda stands out from the rest.

The app provides features like necessary study materials, video lectures (which are available round the clock to students), Assamese interpretation, and doubt clearing through the app within 24 hours.

It is also cheap and readily affordable to students; a student of class 10 can get full access to a subject by paying a one-time payment of Rs 600. For class 12 students, per subject fee is only Rs 2050.

Co-founder Baruah points out clearly that their aim is to reach every student and help them become more knowledgeable. “We aim to reach out to as many students as possible in as many places as possible, and provide quality tutorials to aid in their academic journey. Students can also track their progress by engaging in periodic testing. Our mobile app operates on a paid subscription basis, offering premium academic services to parents or guardians of students in high school and even higher education. Our revenue is generated by students who opt to pay for any of the courses we offer.”

Since the first course launch in April 2020, Gyan Panda has generated a revenue of Rs 3,50,000.

With the average price for a subject set at Rs 1,325, and a minimum requirement of four subjects for every student, the market potential is Rs 610 crore per year

The market for mobile learning apps in Assam is an ever growing one. Talking about their target market, Baruah added, “We have done an extensive research behind the app. We got to know that there are around 11.50 lakhs students in Assam studying at high school and higher secondary level. We have done an extensive research behind the app. We got to know that there are around 11.50 lakhs students in Assam studying at high school and higher secondary level. With the average price for a subject set at Rs 1,325, and a minimum requirement of four subjects for every student, the market potential is Rs 610 crore per year.”

To ensure its continual growth, Gyan Panda co-founders went a step further and expanded their target from just high school students and students in higher secondary schools to anybody with a smartphone in the family, students in the rural areas, and anyone speaking the Assamese language.

The start-up encountered some from its market initially, including lack of confidence in online learning, constantly searching for free education, lack of expertise in operation of mobile apps, and inability to make payments online.

“We have taken several proactive steps to solve these problems. Some of those include; creating more awareness about the benefits of learning with mobile apps and correcting any misconceptions that might exist; creating videos for proper explanation on the app features and making them accessible on YouTube to students, creating videos directing students on how to pay online and creating a guide section in the app where the different features of the apps were explained,” said Dibakar Dutta.

Speaking on innovations front, Dutta adds, "Apart from these awareness creations, we started accepting payment through bank deposit. Also, we have added our contact number on the app; whenever anyone needs any guidance on whatever step, we explain it to them via call."

As for their competition, the folks at Gyan Panda say, there are no app based online learning platforms for Assamese medium students right now. "However, some of our indirect competitors are various YouTube channels run by individuals, and private coaching centres.”

With this app the group has created, more students can begin to get more value, especially during the lockdown. It does seem like there will be more innovations arising from Gyan Panda; a collaboration that works.

EastMojo
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