India has the largest K-12 student population in the world, with over 260 million children enrolled in schools across the country. While access has improved over time, educational outcomes remain poor for a majority of these students, ultimately affecting their earning capabilities and long-term well-being.
To address this challenge, Village Capital is seeking to champion entrepreneurs and companies who want to transform the way children learn and grow. We are interested in a wide array of companies, ranging from innovative school and after school models to those offering technology that enables personalized learning for students. With support from Omidyar Network and an ecosystem of partners, we will develop and scale these ventures in the following ways:
Support and invest through our collaborative investment readiness program.
The program will consist of three four-day workshops that take place over the course of three months. Our award-winning curriculum encourages deep collaboration within the cohort, and at the end of the program, the entrepreneurs will collectively peer-select two ventures to receive offers of $50,000 USD investment from VilCap Investments. Village Capital has developed more than 500 entrepreneurs with this model over 50 programs, and 96% would recommend the process.
Facilitate interactions between startups and strategic partners.
Early-stage startups often need validation from customers as well as relationships with key partners in order to tailor solutions as they scale. We will streamline this process, helping startups connect and interact with:
- leading investors, entrepreneurs, and other sector experts who will offer mentorship during workshops as well as additional office hours; and
- potential customers, partners, and other industry stakeholders, who will participate in business development sessions at the workshops
Omidyar Network will also evaluate participating companies to explore whether they would be a good fit for its education portfolio at the appropriate stage.
For this program, Village Capital and Omidyar Network are particularly interested in the following models :
- Innovative and affordable school operators;
- Scalable teaching models that build foundational literacies and / or competencies (such as critical thinking) and character qualities (such as adaptability);
- Adaptive learning platforms that provide differentiated and/or personalized learning experiences based on students’ individual needs;
- Affordable, content-based models to support in-school and/or after-school learning;
- Assessments and other tools that enable more effective student performance monitoring and support;
- Professional development tools for teachers and school leaders;
- Platforms that help decision-makers (i.e. school owners, teachers, parents) discover and evaluate edtech products and services;
- Other models that enhance learning outcomes for K-12 students
Furthermore, participating ventures must fulfil all of the following criteria:
- At least one full-time team member based in India
- A minimum viable product
- Meaningful customer or business validation (not limited to revenue, can also be successful pilot studies, number of users, and/or strategic partnerships)
Program dates and locations:
Workshop 1: Sept 18 – 21
Workshop 2: Oct 24 – 27
Workshop 3: Nov 20 – 23
Workshops consist of four-day engagements with companies, investors, and partners. They will be held in Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, and/or Hyderabad. Exact locations are being finalized, but Village Capital will bear all of the flight & lodging costs for participants to attend all workshops.
For more information about the program, please reach out to Perry Nunes at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applications close on July 21st.