Startups investors evaluate 3 elements when deciding on whether to risk their capital; team, product and market. While team is always a key consideration in the EdTech space, there tends to be a focus on market over product. We explore how the ingredients of an EdTech product decides market distribution and market share. In doing so, it serves as a reminder to EdTech start-ups and investors of the primacy of education in EdTech.
Case studies of success
Nordic companies Kide Science and Dragonbox focussed firstly upon curriculum and pedagogy, meaning they identified from the outset the learning goals and delivery method their product would address and supply. Though their products are very popular, there is nothing fancy about them. What they do though is deliver a strong research-based pedagogy. Their lessons are backed up by the pedagogy and relevant learning goals. For any teacher, the challenges of implementation are overcome by the planning and preparation provided by both companies. It’s not just the quality of the product itself but how they have made it accessible for the common teacher. This demonstrates how in EdTech product design, targeting specific curricula and aligning with familiar and trusted pedagogy opens up market access. Kide Science and Dragonbox have earned market credibility because pedagogues are at heart pragmatists: they are only interested in what works. If an EdTech product does not attain curriculum learning goals through proven pedagogy, it will never have a market. In the case of these companies, they poured angel and seed capital into building a quality product, not a minimal viable product, before going to market.