India’s booming edtech market, which saw multiple startups including Byju’s, Toppr, Unacademy and more raising funding amid the Covid pandemic, is staring at further boost on the back of growth in higher education and lifelong learning segments. The segment is referred to post K-12 market including undergraduate and postgraduate degrees and working professionals opting for upskilling and/or reskilling courses. The total addressable markets for the two segments –higher education and lifelong learning – are expected to grow from $400 million and $100 million in FY20 to $3.6 billion and $1.2 billion respectively in FY25, according to data from RedSeer. The combined growth of the two segments is pegged at around 10X to approximately $5 billion.
The overall online higher education market will benefit from the new reforms set forth, including the increase in public spending (targeted at 6 per cent of the nation’s GDP) along with other accompanying macro-economic factors such as relaxation in regulations governing degrees, supply-side capacity gaps, need realisation among students and professionals and transition to the credit system, according to the report by the management consulting firm.
The government had last month unveiled the National Education Policy 2020 that focused on ending “the fragmentation of higher education by transforming higher education institutions into large multidisciplinary universities, colleges, and HEI clusters/Knowledge Hubs, each of which will aim to have 3,000 or more students…to help build vibrant communities of scholars and peers, break down harmful silos, enable students to become well-rounded across disciplines.” The policy read. The government had also said that the structure and lengths of degree programmes will be adjusted accordingly, for instance, the undergraduate degree will be of either 3 or 4-year duration, with multiple exit options within this period, with appropriate certifications.
The market for higher education is also expected to see a 6 per cent CAGR in student enrolment from 40 million in FY20 to 53 million in FY25. The market for online lifelong learning also will expand further with “further push after Covid as the economic uncertainty further establishes the need for continuous learning,” the report noted. Apart from Covid, existing skills getting increasingly redundant, job creation lagging behind new additions to the workforce annually, and a mismatch between industry requirements versus education curriculum in colleges are the other reasons for growth.