Virtual learning has a lot of potential in India



How does the Live Tutor virtual learning environment work?
Live Tutor is a web based learning platform which connects the knowledge
provider (teacher) to the knowledge seeker (student) over the broadband. It
facilitates the exchange of learning between student and teacher by using voice
and video over Internet protocol. The platform also includes Live tutor Learning
Management System which allows the teachers to publish their respective courses,
schedule it and allow students to search and select the course/topic/tutor of
their choice.

What is Smartlinxs go-to-market strategy on Live Tutor?
The Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia (CLSA) report says supplementary
teaching outside the classroom is a big business in India with the current
market size of $5.3 bn. With the passing of Right to Education Bill, the Indian
Government is facing a shortage of an estimated 1.1 mn teachers.

What benefits do you see in virtual learning in India?
According to CII and IMRB Broadband Report 2009, broadband penetration can
empower 326 mn students, and 7 mn teachers. This gives tremendous scope for
e-learning and virtual learning in India. The government is increasing its focus
on connecting the rural population through ICT and broadband for education,
health and e-governance. Government of India is aiming at 100 mn broadband
Internet subscribers by 2014 under the national broadband penetration program.

From where will major investments come for the education sector in India?
According to an industry research, the education sector presents an
investment potential of $100 bn over the next five to six years. Venture
capitalists and private equity players will have a role to play in the expansion
going forward. Moreover, experts feel by enabling private participation in
education, private players can have a significant role in expanding the sector.

Would Smartlinx expand its services beyond India?
According to a new report by Ambient Insight, the global market for
e-learning reached $27.1 bn in 2009. The demand is growing by a five-year CAGR
of 12.8% and revenues will reach $49.6 bn by 2014. North America will be the top
distance learning buyer throughout the 2009-14 forecast period. In the 2009
market, Western Europe accounted for the second highest expenditure. By 2014,
Asia will overtake Western Europe and account for the second highest global
expenditure. This gives us tremendous opportunity to extend our services to
North America, Europe and Asia in the coming years.

PC Suraj
surajp@cybermedia.co.in

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