Aptech to Increase Focus on Up-Skilling and Upcountry Markets for Next Level of Growth
Rapidly overcoming Covid-19 disruptions, the global education, and training firm Aptech is charting plans for its next level of growth. The company is increasing focus on the up-skilling/re-skilling segment and expects aggressive growth to come from expansion in upcountry locations.
The company expects the contribution from the up-skilling segment to increase considerably over the next 12 months. “Covid-19 has resulted in many employees losing their jobs or getting their salaries cut as they find their skills irrelevant under the current scenario or the ‘New Normal.’ Hence, the number of people opting for up-skilling and re-skilling is going to increase manifold. While the education and training to new aspirants contribute almost 70 percent to our revenues and the rest comes from up-skilling of working professional, we expect over 50 percent of our revenues to come from the re-skilling segment in 2021 and beyond,” shared Dr. Anuj Kacker, President and Executive Director, Aptech.
The education major has designed advanced and modular courses for the up-skilling of working professionals who look for customization and flexibility in terms of course features and timings. It is offering up-skilling courses focused on online and blended learning, which leverages the company’s technology platform and expertise.
Further, the company has plans to tap the Tier-2 and -3 markets by expanding franchise presence in the upcountry locations. “Aspirations of students in smaller cities and towns are no lesser than the aspirations of students in large cities. Online and technology-based learning is democratizing access to quality education. Hence, with our deep technology play we are well placed to cater to the aspirations of the students and professionals in Tier-2 and -3 locations through blending learning,” said Kacker.
As training and education are witnessing the prominence of technology-based and online learning, Aptech expects cluster-based franchising as the new trend for expansion. Kacker highlighted that as small towns are becoming viable markets for expansion, they will be grouped in clusters that franchise partners can cater to. “With over 800 small cities and towns in India, there is a huge opportunity for expansion,” he noted.
Aptech expects 2021 as the crucial year for the company as it moves ahead with its aggressive strategies. Without disclosing the detailed figures, Kacker informed that the company has done significantly better in Q2FY2020-21 (July-September) as compared to the Q2 of the previous fiscal. “While the student enrollments in Q1 (Apr-Jun) saw a decline of 30-35 percent, the Q2 fared exceedingly better YoY as the students who deferred admissions earlier were quick to join as the Covid-19 related restrictions eased,” informed Kacker.
The company converted its entire counseling on the online mode, which delivered dual benefits. As online counseling enabled direct conversation with the students and their parents, the exercise resulted in high and time-bound conversions. In fact, the entire business has pivoted digitally and every single center is imparting training and education in a remote format. Kacker informed that Aptech franchise partners have delivered over 3 million student hours of content and training during the last 9 months.
He further added that as most of the industries faced disruption due to Covid-19, which resulted in lay-offs, Aptech has done a commendable job on new placements. “We saw increased demand from content generation industry of media and entertainment where we placed over 800 students during the lockdown period. The average salaries of our MAAC and Arena Animation students also raised from Rs 15,000-20,000 to Rs 28,000-30,000 per month due to increased demand,” disclosed Kacker.