Online apps and platforms have infiltrated virtually every area of our lives, and education is no different. Education technology (‘edtech’) is transforming the way we acquire knowledge and skills, aiming to make learning faster, more cost-effective and enjoyable.
Edtech spans a range of areas; from online submission of homework, platforms for online courses or entire degree programs, mobile learning applications, or gamification or virtual reality techniques. And it’s growing fast. The global edtech market is forecast to reach $252 billion by 2020 representing a 17% year on year growth, according to EdTechXGlobal. Tellingly, the report found that only 2% of the education market is currently digitised, spelling a huge potential for further growth.
Investments are hotting up too. Edtech investments hit a new record of $9.5 billion last year, up 30% from 2016. The UK is leading the charge in Europe, coming out top for venture capital and angel investing, and accounting for 34% of total investment in the sector. Moreover, it’s one of the fastest growing digital sectors in the UK, with the number of edtech startups now on a par with those in the fintech sector. Names to make Startups.co.uk Fast 100 index included UK global literacy database Pobble, online referencing tool RefME, parent to teacher communication tool Schoop, and student conversion platform Uniquest.
The global impact could huge. Online resources make learning more accessible, levelling the playing field for those who may not have had access to good education in the past. Benjamin Vedrenne-Cloquette, co-founder of EdTechXGlobal, sums up the importance of the edtech for the future economy; “50% of current jobs won’t exist in 2025. In a rapidly evolving economy where skill sets continue to progress at an accelerated pace, digital models offer a way to capture these changes and offer new routes for re-skilling as well as addressing widespread labour shortages.”
This is certainly a space to watch, and for technologists who can bring real value to learning across all levels, there’s huge revenue potential too.
Here at Expand, we’re working with some of the most innovative, fast growing firms in the edtech space. If you’re interested in the latest opportunities or want to discuss how we can help you to grow your team, please contact us here.