Globally, the education business is
estimated at $2 trillion and growing. In India, since formal education has not
been able to cope with demand, various private players in the non-formal segment
of education have emerged to meet the demand for trained manpower. Hot sectors
such as IT, retail, aviation and real estate have seen the emergence of such
non-formal, private educators.
According to experts, the Indian IT
training market is growing around 46% YoY and is pegged at around Rs 2,135 cr.
The industry has seen a lot of diversification in terms of course structure
after the IT bubble burst. In fact, the animation industry alone is estimated to
be over Rs 500 cr and growing at 40% annually.
“It is very
difficult to estimate the size of the non-formal education sector in India
because the education sector has primarily been addressed by the formal sector.
But the advent of institutes such as NIIT and Aptech has created a resource pool
to meet the demand of trained manpower,” says a senior Ficci official.
Companies such as NIIT and Aptech have already made their foray into diversified
segments related to ITeS. “We see a good growth in our current initiatives
of Aptech Computer Education (IT), Arena (animation), Avalon (aviation) and
N-power (hardware and networking). As and when we get an opportunity, we will
look at other sectors for offering education programmes,” says Pramod
Khera, CEO & MD, Aptech.
With revenues of Rs 795 cr, NIIT has
emerged as a leading player in the global training segment. Last year, nearly
60% of NIIT’s revenues came from its overseas operations. The company has
also diversified its portfolio by offering courses in executive management
education programmes in association with Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs)
and NIIT Institute of Finance Banking & Insurance (IFBI), to develop talent
for the banking industry. “The strong growth in revenue reflects the wide
acceptance of the GNIIT and engineers programmes by students and industry
alike,” explains Vijay K Thadani, CEO, NIIT.
In the retail
segment, biggies such as Bharti and Pantaloon have already collaborated with
various educational institutes to meet the burgeoning demand. Global Retail
School (GRS) has 40 institutions across the country in technical association
with Annamalai University and Bharti Resources (a wholly-owned subsidiary of
Bharti Enterprises). The former is promoted by Cosmo Aviation Training School,
which also runs an air hostess training school called Flying Cats.
The six-month professional certificate course covers topics such as
retail sales and marketing, retail visual merchandising and space planning,
retail buying and merchandise management, retail supply chain management, retail
management and store operations and retail customer relationship management.
“Branding has come up in every segment. It makes a difference. The brand
always works harder to protect the interest of the consumer. The bottomline is
that ‘value for money’ quotient is very high in these courses. We
are focusing on tier-II and tier-III cities where the growth is relatively high
and the next opportunities are expected to come,” says Aditi Srivastava,
CEO, Global Retail School.
Real estate majors such as Ansals are also
looking to invest around Rs 500 crore in the education business in the next five
years. “As a real estate developer, we already fulfill the basic criteria
which is required to set up an educational institute. We already have a legacy
in the education business in form of Chiranjeev Bharti Schools, Ansal Institute
of Technology and Sushant School of Art & Architecture. In the next two
areas we are focussing on retail education in real estate and real estate
management,” says Kunal Banerjee, V-P, marketing, Ansal API.