Master of Business Administration

Faculty / School

School of Business Studies (SBS)


Syed Atif Murtaza Qaiser, Lecturer, Department of Marketing

Project Coordinator (External)

Mr. Ali Rehan

Committee Member 1

Syed Atif Murtaza Qaiser Lecturer Department of Marketing Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi

Project Type

MBA Research Project

Keywords">Education Portal, E-Learning, Marketplace, Ed-tech, Online learning

Abstract / Summary

E-Learning industry spans around 250 billion USD worldwide with an expected CAGR of 27% for the next 6 years (Preeti Wadhwani, 2021). Cloud based LMS integration with AI is the future. According to Edsurge (Edsurge, 2021), the industry in 2019 in US was alone worth 1.5 billion USD and has only grown substantially since especially due to the pandemic. The pandemic has been a game-changer for many industries, but the education industry has been fore-most. In April 2020, 5.4 million students in South Korea had to utilize e-learning platforms (Preeti Wadhwani, 2021). Similar trends have been seen worldwide ranging from Germany (Germany Trade and Invest, 2021) to UAE (Market Watch - Middle East online education, 2021) to India. Pakistan, being a third-world country with a lesser internet penetration than the above-mentioned countries may not fare well due to its weak infrastructure but the trend of increase in online learning is on a similar pattern. This is due to continuous increase in internet penetration. In January 2021, internet penetration was standing at 27.5% which is 61 million people, a 21% increase compared to the previous year. (Datareportal, 2021) The education system of Pakistan comprises of 260,903 institutions and is facilitating 41,018,384 students with the help of 1,535,461 teachers (Arif, 2019). The system includes 180,846 public institutions and 80,057 private institutions. 31% of the educational institutes in Pakistan are run by private sector while 69% are public institutes (Rifat, 2019). As such, 85,000 students sit for Cambridge examination boards exams every year while 4 million students appear for local boards. (GEO news, 2021) Internet penetration in Pakistan, albeit increasing, is limited due to the economic conditions and infrastructure present in the country. Consequently, E-learning capabilities will mostly be available in the urban areas. Also, the upper economic strata (Socio Economic Class A and B) are more likely to have the capability to adapt to E-learning. They will also have more propensity to spend on supplementary learning programs available at Valeem Marketplace that support accredited examinations like O-levels, A-Levels, SAT, GRE, etc. However, it can also be expected that E-learning may be relatively cheaper; due to savings in fuel cost and traveling time. ERC entered the E-learning market with Valeem. As a premium product that offered personalized courses or tutoring (Valeem, 2021). Valeem had great success. Valeem’s great success had its key in the checks and balances they did to vet the teachers, and the efforts taken to pair the right instructor with each student ensuring personalized course development according to each student’s needs. However, this premium product model hit a pitfall in terms of scalability where the manual checks ended up requiring larger workforce. This led to developing the idea of Valeem Marketplace where they envisioned a marketplace where demand, supply and customer feedback would automate these issues. Valeem Marketplace will be amongst the first educational marketplace in Pakistan to connect qualified instructors with students (Vlearn, 2021). Its mission is to facilitate online learning by connecting students across the globe with expert instructors by removing the barriers of location, time and distance. Valeem Marketplace will operate in the B2B and B2C markets, providing customized solutions to their clients. Unlike Valeem, since the checks and balances have been automated, Valeem Marketplace will leave the issue of pricing to market forces and believes that through demand and supply the invisible hand of market will determine price for each course offering. Valeem Marketplace will have some indirect competition from major sites like Coursera, Udemy, Udacity and Khan academy and some direct competition from Nearpeer or Air Academy. Coursera increased its revenue by 59% in 2020 (Coursera). This shows the potential that exists and now has been enlarged by the pandemic. The World Bank also proposes development of knowledge packs for the implementation of low-tech remote learning (Martinez, Barron, & Zacharia, 2021). Valeem Marketplace also faces competition from new entrants in the market as more and more traditional schooling system try to digitalize themselves. While the world experiences a boom in online education due to the pandemic, it also faces the threat that once the pandemic has ended the entire growth spurt may die off. At that time the market will be dominated heavily by the major players and competition may be fierce.

Available for download on Monday, July 19, 2027