Bengaluru-based AI-focussed edtech startup Verzeo recently secured Series A funding of $5 Mn, shared the 20-year-old entrepreneur.
Excited to see young founders like Subramanyam Vungarala, Founder @ Verzeo getting serious about the edtech space, we reached out to him to have a discussion on his journey so far and plans post Series A funding. (Transcript below)
What’s the shortest way to define Verzeo?
Verzeo means “Joy of learning”. We believe that the quality of learning should naturally inspire a student to do extraordinary things.
What problems are you solving, for whom & how?
Verzeo is here to help bridge the gap between a students’ classroom environment and their workplace atmosphere. We make this happen for each of our students by using our specially designed artificial intelligence based learning.
Who were your early adopters? How many users/clients currently use Verzeo?
Our early adopters are students from Tier 1 cities like Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai. We have around 18000 paid students and total of 120000+ users. We check their learning experience using our AI algorithms and Machine learning so they get better learning experience.
How did this start? Tell us about your background, team, who do you have supporting you?
While working on my first startup Transtele, I used to visit lot of rural areas for instillation of Wifi towers. What I saw there is that the condition of students was not good as they didn’t have enough exposure to corporate and faced a huge language barrier in their learning experiences. That’s when I started Verzeo to give best learning experiences to the students and improve their employability. I dropped out from Manipal Institute of Technology in my 3rd year at the age of 18. My entrepreneurial journey started during my time in Manipal, where I founded the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Manipal Chapter during my first year of engineering.
Taking inspiration and bringing the expertise from my previous start-up Transtele which was sold to a tech-giant company, my focus was on making the corporate community a better place, one student at a time. Luckily I have support from my parents as well as friends.
How does Verzeo plan to utilize the recent round of funding? What are Verzeo’s expansion plans for the coming years?
We are planning to invest on R&D for AI and marketing expansion in different cities and partnering with multiple training Institutes
What’s your take on opportunities in the Indian education market? What role can AI play here?
The Indian market has immense opportunities as majority of the Indian population is young, educated and in my opinion keen to learn the cutting edge technologies needed at work. The role of AI in the Indian market will be an important one as most of the jobs are being automated and will require the use of AI and talented people well versed in AI to make it work.
Who would you call your competitors? And how are you different?
Our competitors are other e-learning portals, but we are different from them as we give the students some real-life applications and experience on the topic which they have just learnt. By giving the students internships it ensures that the student gets some real-life exposure and can apply what they have learnt.
What advice do you have for students in this digital age?
An advice to students in the digital age would be to make use of the vast resources which are available online and use them to learn some new skills to better brace themselves for the future.