July 04 2018

Russian EduTech witnesses an investment renaissance

On 20 and 21 April, Moscow hosted EdmarketConf 2018, a practical online education conference. One of the key topics for discussion was investing in Russian education.

The market for education technologies is eliciting interest from angel investors and venture funds (Runa Capital, Buran Venture Capital, InVenture Partners), corporations (Mail.Ru and Yandex), state-run corporations, and major businesspeople.  This includes Aleksey Mordashov, the founder of Severstal, Sergey Solonin, a co-founder of QIWI, and Igor Rybakov, whose nonprofit fund has launched several programmes to support educational projects.

Anastasia Kozhemyakina, the editor-in-chief for EdmarketConf 2018, talks about how investors are assessing the Russian market for education technologies.

The scope of the education market in Russia, according to a Netology study, totalled 1.8 trillion roubles in 2016; with the share of private businesses being 19.2% (351.7 billion roubles), while online education accounted for 1.1% (20.7 billion roubles)

How are the views of investors in this segment changing? According to Aleksey Solovyov, a venture capitalist, partner at iTech Capital, and speaker at EdmarketConf, any segment in the field of education is interesting for investors if it satisfies three criteria. The first is that new technologies can be used in it. The second is that the technology use now is palpably inadequate. The third is that these technologies can be monetised.