The rise of the ed-tech entrepreneur

Investors looking for the next great socially minded business or social entrepreneurs looking for new industry sectors where they can make a big impact, are increasingly beginning to look at the education sector. The education-technology sector is ripe for disruption, investment and rapid growth, while offering the opportunity to dramatically and positively make a difference to people’s lives and the global economy. Technology combined with educational expertise can have a powerful effect on learning. In the US, the Center for Digital Education estimated that public elementary schools and colleges and universities spent around $20.4 billion on ed tech in 2014 alone. So what is driving this upward trend? An interest in new educational models: blended learning, a combination of face-to-face and online instruction, and personalised learning, educational activities tailored to students’ individual needs as determined by frequent assessments. At the end of the day, no technology can outperform a great educator, but the best ed-tech offerings can make a tangible contribution by freeing up educators' time and empowering them with data and tools that enhance their ability to teach and achieve maximum results. Here in Africa, more entrepreneurs with new ideas and innovations are needed, as well as real solutions that will help educators and students on the ground. This is the time for the ed-tech entrepreneurs on the continent to shine.