Chennai-based startup EduRaft Pvt Ltd, which owns and operates Eduraft.com, a site featuring information on education and allied activities, has raised $61,000 (Rs 33 lakh) in angel funding from an alumni group from IIM-Kozhikode and Anna University, Chennai. The fund will be primarily used for expanding the company’s offering in Bangalore and Delhi, and also for building its tuition network.
The startup was set up in June 2012 by Aarthi Ramasubramanian, Sharath Loganathan and Thirukumaran Nagarajan. Prior to this initiative, Ramasubramanian worked with Aavishkaar, the State Bank of India and Punjab National Bank. She holds a PGDM in Finance from KJ Somaiya Institute of Management Studies and Research, Mumbai. Both Loganathan and Nagarajan are IIM-Kozhikode alumni. While Loganathan worked in companies like Financial Inclusion Network and Operations (FINO) and Satyam Computers, Nagarajan worked for Aavishkaar, Axis Bank, Emergent Ventures and ABB.
As of now, the site offers information about more than 20,000 schools, tuition classes and extra-curricular activities (like arts, language, skill development, sports and computer training, among others) in Chennai, as well as in Mumbai and its surrounding areas (Thane, Navi Mumbai, etc.). The company is planning to cover Bangalore and Delhi by the end of March this year. Other features on the site include an Edu map (allows users to filter and search for schools using Google Maps), a comparison engine (for schools, based on their physical infrastructure) and opinion articles (written on topics of interest by an in-house content team).
“Choosing the right kind of education for a child is still an ordeal. Lack of awareness among parents, less visibility of schools/extra-curricular classes and lack of financial prowess or online presence of an institute have led to the situation where parents are crowding only specific schools and classes, oblivious of other good places where a child can be admitted. We are trying to bridge this gap by providing information about schools and institutes that do not regularly feature in the news for oversubscribed applications,” said Ramasubramanian.
To generate revenues, the company has in place two paid features (apart from the free school search). One is assisted school search, helping parents find the right school by shortlisting those, based on the requirements. It also helps track the admission processes. The second one is partner listing – it targets tutorials and classes providing allied school activities. It is a listing service that aims to provide tutors with the right target audience and also provides crucial information to parents to empower their decision-making process.
(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)