Education Mar, 23 2010

Create professionals: generate profits

By Abha Garyali
Create professionals: generate profits

The increased need of competitive coaching centres in India has paved way for Brainsmiths to expand its presence via franchising. In an interview, Jean Thomas John, Director, Brainsmiths Education Pvt. Ltd, shares with us the aspirations and future plans of the company. 

Abha Garyali (AG): Tell us something about the inception and success of ‘Brainsmiths Education’?

Jean Thomas John (JTJ): We started Brainsmiths in 2001. We initiated our growth with a very humble beginning. Now we stand as a prominent name in the domain of entrance examination like IITJEE, AIIMS, AIEEE, AIPMT, and state level Engineering and Medical entrances. A feather had added recently to our vibrant ensemble and that is the authorisation to coach students of minority communities under ‘Free coaching and Allied Scheme’of the Ministry of Minority Affairs, Government of India. 

AG: What is the USP of Brainsmiths Education? How is it different from other training institutes of the similar courses?

JTJ: ‘Think global and act local’ is the mantra of today’s generation and this is the doctrine through which Brainsmiths imparts education. We proudly claim to be the only coaching centre which has amalgamated systematic curriculum for both central and state level exams, thereby facilitating and enabling easy understanding of the subject by the students. We believe this is our USP. It is needless to mention that all the common and not so common infrastructural facilities and computer based automations are also available with us. Last but definitely not the least the crowning glory of our institute is the highly acclaimed and aptly qualified faculty team developed by our ‘Faculty Development Cell’. 

AG: What are your views about the future of training institutes in India?

JTJ: In 2008, test preparation industry in India stood around 1.5 billion USD (nearly Rs. 7200 crore) and is growing at 15 per cent CAGR on Y-o-Y basis. During the 2008-09 academic session, around 10 lakh students appeared in AIEEE, four lakh in IIT-JEE and around two lakh in AIPMT. These numbers will significantly rise with the Government opening up newer IIT’s, IIIT’s, AIIMS and NIT’s across the country.

The recent announcement by HRD Minister, Kapil Sibbal, regarding the core curriculum for science and commerce subjects across 20 educational boards is a boon to the educational franchising industry. Owing to the parity in the syllabus, it would be easy for the franchisors to expand their services across various state boundaries without worrying much about the local syllabi and altering their basic textual contents.  

AG: When did you start franchising? From where did you get the inspiration to opt for franchising as a mode of expansion?

JTJ: We started franchising in November 2009. Taking the franchise route was not an impulsive decision. We are in this business since last nine years. We decided to start our expansion programme around two years back. Since then we have been doing the entire groundwork to standardise the content and its delivery. We have computer based automated systems for enquiry handling, fees collection, student-teacher feedbacks, staff and student attendance etc. Besides this we have done extensive research in order to understand the local needs of various states.    

AG: What are the qualities that you search for in your prospective franchisees?

JTJ: We are open to partner with people who display a passion for excellence. We would solicit enquiries fro 

    • Professors, teachers or individuals from educational profession, engineers etc.
    • Ex. army personnel or PSU employees
    • Core investors
    • Heads of existing coaching centers or educational institutions

AG: How many franchisees do you have and in which cities in India?

JTJ: At present we have three company owned centres (two in Indore (M.P), one in Aurangabad (Maharashtra). We have four franchise centres located at Ratlam (M.P), Modinagar (U.P), Sehore(M.P) and Karnal (Haryana).

AG: In what ways do you support and train your franchisees?

JTJ: We provide complete A to Z solution.

  • First and the most important thing is that we provide complete support in recruitment of faculties. The faculties would be trained by our Faculty Development Cell. This will ensure smooth delivery of the content.
  • Franchisees will also get systems for handling all their operations efficiently.
  • Complete guidance in advertisement and promotional activities which include pre launch, launch and post launch activities. The benefits of national level advertising (as and when feasible) will also be available to the franchisees.
  • The franchisees would undergo detailed training at Brainsmiths head office for the complete insight into the business.
  • Guidelines for choosing the right place to start the business.
  • Besides this standard tips on seminars, support from experts will also be given wherever possible.

AG: How much investment is required by an aspiring franchisee?

JTJ: The minimum investment required is around Rs six lakh. 

AG: What are your future plans in terms of expansion through franchising?

JTJ: We plan to open and successfully run around 200 franchise outlets in the next three years. 

Related: Franchising the Eurokids way

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