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Digital Education Cannot Replace Classroom Coaching Anytime Soon, Veteran Indian Edupreneur Says

Digital Education Cannot Replace Classroom Coaching Anytime Soon, Veteran Indian Edupreneur Says
Image credit: Sneha Banerjee

Education technology today has the entrepreneurs and investors investing their time and money into it abundantly. But one of the flag bearers of this business, Viswanath Pillutla, Owner of T.I.M.E. believes that though his brand continues to innovate with changing times, some basics of the business shall remain intact.

Speaking to Entrepreneur at the Franchise India Conference in Hyderbabad, Viswanath said that  he has always told his employees that to fulfil the requirements of their students is a ‘sacred’ responsibility of his staff.

Viswanath has been at the forefront planning and implementation of the expansion of T.I.M.E ad T.I.M.E Kids across the country through a large network of franchises. T.I.M.E is a formidable brand in the field of test preparation with the 236 offices in 112 cities across the country and 250 centers of T.I.M.E. Kids. He is also actively spearheading the inclusion of digital education to the brand’s portfolio.

Competition has always helped us

Talking about the numerous online education courses mushrooming in this space Viswananth said, “For us it has been competition that has helped us excel in whatever we have done. It helps us beyond our toes. When we started in Hyderabad way back on 1992, there was another set of IIM graduates who had started out in the same time. That time the competition really pushed us to excel in what we were doing,” he said.

“Today, when you say ‘digital education’ it is definitely good. But for people like us, who have been good in brick and mortar, we are obviously upgrading our skills and providing a lot of new inputs on the digital front. But our philosophy at T.I.M.E. is that digital education should be something used to supplement classroom training. I don’t think we are ready for digital education to replace classroom education,” he said.

Viswananth said that though their company might not be in the news for digital education, large part of what the digital pure players are offering, T.I.M.E has already got into those domains.While he believes that online education can definitely add value, it cannot displace pure play classroom training anytime soon.

Ever since the startup boom took place, companies like BYJU's, Simplilearn have made their mark in the online edtech space.