Byju's can't go slow; agility is key: Divya Gokulnath


In a subdued macro-environment where funding is scarce and there is a lull in the pace of closure of deals, it may generally be prudent for start-ups to identify priority areas and go slow on broad expansion but for Byju’s, it is business as usual. “...we have so many lines of businesses, there’s no going slow. We cannot go slow. We are a very big organisation... we have to move faster... and for a tech company, for a start-up, agility is the key. There is no room for complacency, no room for slowing down,” says co-founder Divya Gokulnath.

The Bengaluru-based edtech decacorn is chalking out a deeper expansion plan for India. The strategy is to build on the portfolio of subjects curated for the market and expand its slate of regional languages to enable wider accessibility to its products. “In India, it is all about having more and more options for the students. Over the next 3-5 years, you would see us doing whatever we are doing, even better... we would be going deeper in India, we have our product already in 12 regional languages, we will launch them in more... we have them in almost all subjects, we would expand that portfolio as well,” says Gokulnath.

The other focus area would be to broaden the firm’s efforts towards establishing a strong global footprint and address the learning requirements of students across the world. “The other is also to look at how we can become a global company where we can look at and address the learning requirements of students across the world... as we go global, we will look at going into more countries, we will look at partnering with more companies, both in India and abroad... and ultimately, with the single mission of creating more value for students,” says Gokulnath.

To all the start-ups who may be struggling to navigate the crisis posed by the instability in the macro-environment, Gokulnath has a piece of advice: “If your product is addressing a need of the society and it is addressing something at scale, it will work if you give your 100% to it. Times will be good and times will be bad, time need not be a factor to judge your success; and there is anyway nothing like failure, there is only learning and there is only winning.”

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