Edtech Startup Baims Wants To Make Learning Easier For Kuwait's High School And University Students
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This article is part of a series on pioneering entrepreneurs in Kuwait that Entrepreneur Middle East has built in collaboration with Kuwait Finance House. Kuwait Finance House is considered a pioneer in Islamic finance or Sharia’a compliant banking, with it being the first Islamic bank established in 1977 in the State of Kuwait, and is today one of the foremost Islamic financial institutions in the world.
As online learning continues to rise, Baims wants to make its mark in Kuwait’s edtech space as well. Founded in 2017 by co-founders Yousef AlHusaini and Bader Alrshaid, Baims is an e-learning platform dedicated to students in Kuwait. The duo -who both have a background in iOS development- felt that Kuwait’s education system needs improvement as students have a difficult time adapting to an English-based higher education system.
As a result, most students seek private tutors, who may not be always available, or unqualified, and often expensive to a student budget, which is where the platform comes in. “Our ultimate goal is to be a part of the student’s life,” says AlHusaini on how Baims provides educational features such as access to study guides, notes and high-quality video lessons for university and high school students, which are accessible anytime and anywhere through the website and application.
Initially, the platform had limited features and only a website, but after listening to students’ feedback, the duo built features that students requested to use, and now they’ve launched apps available for iOS on the App Store and Android devices on the Play Store. With university and high school students as their main demographic, the duo says they’ve received positive feedback as customers seem to be using it on a daily bases due to its quality of teaching and offered prices, which AlHusaini proudly states are 70% less than a tutor’s price, all the while giving students access to materials anytime and anywhere with no limited access during their school term.
AlHusaini states that while they offer low prices for students, the platform runs on a revenue share based on each transaction with Baims’ instructors. He also explains that instructors can be a tutor, engineer, professor, or even a student, making the platform essentially a peer-to-peer educational marketplace.
“Baims have been profitable since day one, and we believe that everyone should make money when they work with Baims- so basically, instructors invest their time and teach students, [as well as] get money, and they can do that anywhere and anytime too.” And what’s next? The edtech startup just recently launched in beta mode in Riyadh, and they’re also looking towards expanding more in KSA and UAE, and across GCC next too.
Excerpts from a conversation with co-founder and CEO Yousef AlHusaini:
What are some of the main considerations that entrepreneurs should keep when starting up a business in Kuwait and why?
When it comes to establishing business, it's not that easy to get everything structured and licensed, patience is the key but things are getting better by time. Understanding the culture and studying the mindset of people in Kuwait is the key to success and entering the market. I believe the most important thing is understanding the culture and knowing the needs and studying the feasibility of your idea whether it’s going to work here or not.
Lastly, what are some of the opportunities that you see available in the Kuwaiti market today and what would be your advice to aspiring entrepreneurs?
I believe that there are so many opportunities [for] derivative ideas will lead to failure, [and] innovative and new ideas are [needed] in Kuwait. I believe that there are huge demand and opportunities in the education sector and health sector too, where the market is still growing. It’s the best time to enter these industries now.