Flinto Plans Global Presence By Next Year
Exclusive interaction of Mr. Arunprasad Durairaj, CEO & Co-founder, Flinto Learning Solutions with BW.
Founders of Flinto Learning Solutions L-R (Shreenidhi, Arunprasad Durairaj and Vijaybabu Gandhi)
Elaborate on the inception and journey of Flinto Learning Solutions and the need for such a platform at this day and age.
Vijay, Shreenidhi and I (Arunprasad) have been friends for more than 10 years. In 2013, Vijay - father to 5-year-old Aadhav, came to us with a problem that his son was spending a disproportionate amount of time in front of screens. Vijay found it very difficult to deviate his son from gadgets and keep him meaningfully engaged as he was juggling between a busy schedule and prioritizing his son’s developmental needs. With nuclear families increasing in number where both the parents go out to work there’s hardly any time for parents to engage kids meaningfully at home.
Vijay bounced an idea that if there was someone who could professionally curate toys, activities, and books, it would be a huge benefit for parents and could cause a lasting impact on the child’s life.
We all loved that idea as we were also young parents facing similar situations and we personally experienced the lack of quality education in India. On a related note, in a country with a billion population, the rate of penetration of early education was only an abysmal 15%. This fuelled us to create an opportunity to positively impact children’s early years across different mediums of learning. This encouraged our team to take the plunge and build Flinto as a company to close the growing gap in early education.
How are you planning to expand Flinto going forward? What new products/offerings and new markets are you planning to target?
Flinto is the biggest early learning Indian brand with a global presence in 1200+ cities across 8 countries. Apart from India, Flinto has spread its wings in Singapore, Malaysia, Qatar, UAE, Laos, Indonesia, and Kuwait. We focus on holistic learning and development of children across both the mediums of learning - home and school. We have touched the lives of around 5 lakh children around the globe. Flinto envisions reaching out to 2000+ cities transcending borders and concentrating on tier- 2 and tier-3 regions to make early education accessible to all the children.
Looking at the new holistic learning approach like early child education getting acceptance, do you think parents are now looking this as a life-long plan for the children?
Yes. These days, parents understand the importance and the need for holistic early learning. They are aware of the benefits of early learning and therefore there is a need for quality early learning education with unmet demand. The world is radically different than it was a century ago, yet our schools are basically the same. And parents all around the world go to great lengths to make sure their kids get the education they need. Parents are rethinking the relevance of traditional learning in this rapidly changing world. There is a need to actively support holistic development. Teachers and childhood educators need to create a safe, interactive and positive environment in their community to support childhood development. It is but natural for parents to become more aware of the increasing demand for early childhood education and plan for children beforehand to improve their quality of life. This is why we thought of bringing in novelty in early childhood education. This involves children exploring different stages of our unconventional techniques which will prepare them for the fast-paced world.
What kind of acceptance/interest have you seen for this revolutionary concept from the millennial or new age parents?
Millennials understand the need to provide holistic early learning to kids. With both the parents going out to work, children have started depending on TV and gadgets to while away their time. Hence, parents are looking for the right tools for their kids that would unhook them from harmful technology and create a well-balanced learning experience. Flinto’s worldwide presence is the strongest testimony for its acceptance and how new age parents are accepting and understanding the importance of early childhood education. In the last 5 years, there has been a steep increase in the number of subscribers as many parents have started switching to Flinto’s learning methodology to unplug their children from technology and provide quality education in their early years.
With Flinto R&D being the new vertical of Flinto Learning Solutions, how do you plan the further designing and development of the module?
Flinto R&D is not the new vertical, it is the base of what we do. The research we perform here helps us to stay relevant to the rapidly changing child’s world. To make it all the more powerful, we aim to collaborate with national and international researchers with divergent theoretical and methodological perspectives
All our ideas, products and tools come out of our R&D centre. With hundreds of children coming to our center every day, our research scholars work to introduce new meaningful concepts that bring a positive difference in the lives of children.
Drawing inspiration from research findings, the activities at the Flinto R&D Centre are designed and developed to cater to the needs of every child, enabling them to unleash their maximum potential, irrespective of their learning styles.
In the coming months, the centre plans to run workshops on a regular basis for parents, early educators, and children that will serve as a platform to explore new learning methods and techniques that are being embraced by top schools across the globe.
Additionally, the Flinto R&D Centre will host conferences and will invite international speakers to highlight the current trends in the field of early education. Simultaneously, the research centre will focus on conducting studies and publishing empirical and conceptual research papers pertaining to child development in science journals.
Every startup comes across different kind of challenges which you have to deal with at every level. What are those challenges and how do you overcome them?
Being a pioneer in the education subscription box industry in India, the challenges we faced with our unconventional products were manifold.
Challenges in Product: Our products cater to children, parents, and educators. The major challenge was to convince parents and educators that the products are safe and provide a holistic fun learning experience for their children and at the same time satisfy the kids' need for exploration, education, and entertainment.
To overcome this, we built a team with child psychologists, early learning experts, and game designers to carefully design our products, keeping in mind the different demands of our customers. Safety, engagement and life lessons are the three core elements we built into the product. All our products undergo a rigorous testing process and are produced in such a way that it meets all the requirements of the end-users. Our well researched, ready-to-use learning tools enable parents and educators to provide high-quality engagement and education to children.
Challenges in Marketing: The biggest marketing challenge was that most people in the target group were not problem-aware. To overcome that challenge, we had to create loads of content to create awareness and interest in the target audience, which included children, parents and preschool owners. With creative and innovative content, we could educate them about the scope and importance of our products. We also faced multiple problems across domains and addressed each of them with innovative solutions that make our customers happy and stick with us for a long term.
With a rise in no. of start-ups in the early Child learning segment in the past 4-5 years, how do you think Flinto will fare in the long run?
With the increase in demand for quality early childhood education, we would appreciate more players to contribute to this field. Early learning approach needs a lot more research and collaboration of experts and great minds to create global citizens. Flinto’s prime focus has been to make education fun and accessible to children around the world. The acceptance of our products by our customers has given us the confidence to delve into early education deeper to bring in greater ideas and tools that will further chisel young minds.
With our presence in more than 8 countries across 1200 cities we have touched the lives of around 5 lakh children around the globe. Flinto envisions reaching out to 2000+ cities across India. Being the market leaders of early learning in India, Flinto plans to expand to many more countries around the globe by next year.
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