EdTech growth to continue in 2021
Corona accelerates the Austrian EdTech industry: For many years now, the topic of digital education has been gaining importance in both school and work contexts. Until now, however, the focus has often been on individual projects driven by single, dedicated leaders. The Corona pandemic has changed this. Standardized solutions and platforms are now in demand and have arrived in daily operations. Schools and also employers have had to radically change. Of course, there will also be a time “after Corona”, however, the signs are good that the EdTech sector will continue to gain importance even after a return to “normality”. Austrian EdTechs are optimistic about the future and expect further rapid growth this year.
First survey on EdTech in Austria
As EdTech Austria, we naturally wanted to get an overview of the ecosystem at the outset. Therefore, we took a closer look at the roughly 100 Austrian EdTechs. About one third of the companies were also interviewed in a short survey. In addition to general data on the size of the market, information was also collected on target groups, the maturity of the companies and growth expectations, among other things.
Compared to the largest and most active European EdTech markets, Great Britain and France, the topic is still less advanced in Austria. Around 100 Austrian EdTechs currently employ about 2,000 people and generate sales of 120 million euros per year. If we now look to Great Britain, there are currently almost 600 EdTech companies active there, which turn over almost 4 billion euros annually.
However, the market is growing strongly in this country. This is confirmed not only by current success stories, such as the recently announced 70 million euro financing round of GoStudent, which also made international headlines, but also by the growth expectations of Austrian EdTechs for the year 2021.
Austrian EdTechs in the startup and growth phase expect average revenue growth of 175 percent for this year (but this should of course be regarded with caution as a self-statement and should be classified on the basis of the current revenue level in each case). Of course, the growth expectations of already established companies are more cautious. However, a closer look at the breakdown of Austrian EdTech companies according to maturity shows that the share of companies currently in the startup or growth phase is particularly high.
The figures above are another positive signal for the development of the entire market. Start-up activities related to EdTech have increased strongly in recent years. Almost half of the Austrian EdTech companies were founded in the years since 2017.
Focus remains on the school sector
A reflection of the EdTech market naturally also includes a closer look at the target groups. Here it is clear that the focus in Austria continues to be on the school sector. After all, 34 percent offer a digital solution for schools. Second place is shared by offerings for universities and lifelong learning. It must be noted, however, that few companies in Austria explicitly address the higher education sector. However, many EdTechs offer solutions for all target groups and can therefore also be assigned to this market. Digital solutions for vocational training and continuing education follow only close behind in fourth place. This market is served primarily by many long-standing e-learning providers. However, a growing focus on mobile learning solutions and the increasing digitization of onboarding as well as training in sales are ensuring that new players are also entering the market here with innovative solutions.
The following overview provides a consolidated outline of all Austrian EdTechs that were examined in detail for this analysis.
Digital education is no longer just an add-on
After the last challenging year, which at least gave the EdTech market worldwide and also that in Austria a big push forward, the signs for the current year are also pointing to growth. Digital education, and with it EdTech, is now increasingly being seen by educational institutions and employers not just as a “nice to have”, but as a necessity for successful learning and education and training. Novel and innovative solutions will also emerge this year. In the case of established solutions, which often had to be introduced in a very short time due to the pandemic, the focus of the neologism EdTech will shift from the technological to the educational aspect and pedagogical-didactic factors will become more important.
(photos: EdTech Austria)
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