To be precise, higher education is important for three main reasons:
1. To accomplish academic and professional goals
2. To accomplish personal goals .
3. To accomplish Financial goals
Higher education is important, both personally and professionally. When you consider the financial, social and cultural benefits of higher education, it is easy to see how a degree can make a big difference in your life and career.
The role of higher education in society must give expression its key purposes of producing and disseminating knowledge and community engagement. … One is the kinds of knowledge, competencies, skills and attitudes that our graduates require to function in a rapidly changing society and world.
But due to so much of competition around the world many colleges only allow students to enrol in the colleges after passing through entrance exams like GRE, GMAT, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL.
Today we are presenting a startup with the moto “Democratize Test Prep Education” providing test preparations and admission counseling to students.
Lets see what the founders of Plusprep has to say about their venture and startup
1.What is the Name of Your Venture? Any specific reason for this name?
PlusPrep Educational & Technology Services Pvt. Ltd
We chose the name to indicate the core philosophy of the company, i.e adding value to test preparation, hence Plusprep
2.Who is your target Audience/clients?
Our Target Clients are students / individuals who are preparing for various International & National Tests such as GMAT, GRE, IELTS, PTE etc. as well as smaller companies who are looking to train their employees on business communication.
3.Where is your venture based (city, state, country) & What are your geographical target areas?
We are based in Bangalore, Karnataka and our clientele comprises students from the Bangalore City as well as those who are from other locations both Nationally and Internationally, who opt for virtual training.
4.What problems does your venture resolve? What are your products or services?
Motto of Plusprep is to “Democratize Test Prep Education”; our objective is to ensure that students get access to world-class preparation at the lowest possible costs. We believe that financial-might should not determine the quality of education. We specialize in Quality Test Preparation & Admissions Consulting. All our Programs such as GRE, GMAT, SAT, IELTS, TOEFL, Communicative English are delivered in both Online & Classroom Modes. We also conduct Olympiads and Quizzes with incentives to enable earning while learning. We are striving to offer a level playing field to every student to achieve his/her dream of getting into the best schools across the world irrespective of financial might.
Plusprep is also building an Integrated portal to connect all stake-holders such as test takers, providers, universities & freelancers on one platform.
5.Share the idea or story behind the venture. How did it came to an existence? What motivated you to start your own venture?
Both of us (Co-founders) have been part of the Test Prep Industry for a long time now and have closely observed how the students are either made to pay exorbitant fee or settle for poor quality training. We wanted to offer a credible and cost-effective alternative for students and thus started Plusprep. Additionally, our experience in leadership roles and building companies from scratch gave us the self-assurance required for the plunge.
6.Who are your biggest competitors and how do you differentiate yourself from them?
The test prep Industry is crowded with many players; however, the dominant ones are few and have been dominant courtesy tenure & big purse, PlusPrep’s real differentiator is the fact that we offer customized training delivered by faculty with immense experience and track record at an affordable fee. Our focus is to impart quality Education through Technology and not the other way around.
7.How did you identify your co-founder? Tell us something about your co-founder/s
We are 2 Co-founders:
Over 11 years of Experience in the Education Sector
Was part of Senior-Management in some of India’s largest test-prep companies
Has trained and mentored many candidates for sales and marketing roles
Has counselled over 3000+ students on study options
Over 8 Year of Experience in the Education Sector
Over 10,000 training / mentoring hours
CELTA certification from Cambridge University (ESOL)
Designed curriculum for Business Communication programs for Universities, Private Colleges and Corporates
We have known each other for a few years now and were colleagues.
8.How did you hired your first team members? What skills Do you want in your employees/team?
Most of our Team Members are people we have built professional relationships with over the years; they are people we have observed to be proven performers with a stellar track record, rich experience, expertise in their functions, and team dynamics. We believe that a combination of these qualities is essential for a prospective employee. We as a company value quality over quantity and have been extremely diligent in selecting our team members because we believe they represent our brand and are the ‘face of the company’. We also emphasize on team members being compatible with each other & be believe in our vision.
9.What expansion plans are you looking for the next 2 years, next 5 years?
In the short term (2 Years) we aim to consolidate our core offerings and be the go-to choice for students, in medium term (5 Years) we are looking to be the #1 choice for both Online & Offline offerings across the country.
10.Where do you want to see yourself in next 10 years?
We want to be one of the largest education provider company in the next 10 years, our ultimate objective is to create a level-playing field for students and not let financial-might determine the quality of test preparation that they can get access to.
11.What are your goals over the next 1, 3, 6 and 12 months?
Our focus currently is to get our students high scores and admits with scholarships.
12.Have you raised any funding? Or have any plans for the funding?
We are bootstrapped & self-funded. We are open for funding.
13.What were the problems you faced during the starting days and how did you resolve them?
Like most start-ups we did face issues in terms of financing and marketing. We did however know we’d be able to overcome the financial issues if we are able to offer superior programs and generate positive word-of-mouth. Our only focus was to ensure student satisfaction and high scores; this helped us generate higher enquiries who then become students.
14.What was the most challenging part of your journey till now? How did you overcome those challenges?
The transition from being an employee to entrepreneur has been the most challenging part so far; even though we (both co-founders) have been in leadership roles previously, the transition seemed hard. We adapted on-the-go and learnt from other entrepreneurs who had taken a similar journey.
15.Are you married, single or in a relationship?
Suhas – Yes, Married
Ajeeth – Un-married, Single
16.What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
Suhas: Most of my hobbies have been related to social activities such as working with underprivileged communities, campaigning & writing. I am also deeply interested in studying religion & philosophy.
Ajeeth: Fish-keeping, write on various subjects, Fountain Pen Collector, Love reading and researching about philosophy, business and cognitive reasoning.
17.Whats your favorite food & holiday destination?
Suhas: N/A, Bhutan
Ajeeth: No dish specifically; love continental brunches though! Would love to be able to hike the Himalayas someday.
18.Whom do you consider your idol or biggest motivator?
Suhas: Ayn Rand for her philosophy(Objectivism). The biggest motivator is the hunger to drive change through education.
Ajeeth: Elon Musk for his seemingly impossible grit and almost “Iron Man” like genius!
19.What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
The Major difference is the appetite for risk.
20.If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
Suhas: Nothing different, every job has been equally rewarding and has been instrumental in professional growth.
Ajeeth: I don’t regret any decisions I’ve made professionally. I feel the collection of all the decisions I’ve made over the years have defined my career growth and put me where I am today. I can’t think of anything I’d want to do differently.
21.How has being an entrepreneur affected your family & Social life?
Suhas: Social life has certainly taken a back-seat this can be difficult at times; however, the optimism of success overshadows any strains that may arise, it also helps to identify people who would stand by you in times of distress.
Ajeeth: It has made keeping in touch with acquaintances quite difficult, but it has strengthened my bond with my close-friend and family circles because those are the only ones you can make the time for when an entrepreneur and you begin to truly value those interactions.
22.Anything, you would like to say to our readers or upcoming entrepreneurs?
Entrepreneurship is not just about starting a new company. In fact, that’s the easiest part.
If you are not committed to your vision and motto starting up, it can be a painful experience. Entrepreneurs need to have a lot of grit and be able to withstand the test of time and circumstances.
23.Tell us something about your education & family background.
Suhas: Electronics & Telecomm engineer, from a normal middle-class family from Bangalore.
Ajeeth: Completed my BSc in biotechnology from Loyola College Chennai, Completed the CELTA, an English Language Teacher certification from the Cambridge University (ESOL), Currently pursuing an MBA (while working full-time at Plus Prep)
24.What is your USP which makes it unique & different from other start-ups in similar domains.
Our one single differentiator is our Team, which comprises of people from the industry with vast experience, who firmly believe in what we are creating and trying to solve.
25. What do you think is the biggest threat to the success of small businesses & Start-ups today?
Lack of funding at the initial stages can be one of the most detrimental factors to start-ups, also the threat from dominant companies trying to scuffle potential new comers is a real threat.
26. Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?
Suhas and Ajeeth: Not yet, the means to measure success will be the impact an individual / company has on the society.
27.Please share complete name, address, phone number, email id & website of Your Business & Contact Person
Plusprep Educational & Technology Services Pvt. Ltd
#24,CMH Road Indiranagar, Next to Kotak ATM, Bangalore-38