Education Mar, 16 2010

English learning: a great business offer

English, being a global language offers money-spinning business prospect. A large number of entrepreneurs today are cashing on this prospective opportunity by taking up the franchise of English teaching institutes. Read on

By Abha Garyali
Sub Editor
English learning: a great business offer

English as a language has gained a global recognition in the world. This can be said by looking at the universal appeal of this language. During the past few years, India has witnessed the cropping up of number of English learning and speaking institutes.

Factors attributed for growing craze for English

With increasing craze among Indians to settle abroad and growing communication among the residents of various countries across the world, facilitated by the growth of internet, has led to the emergence of large number of English learning institutes. Moreover, speaking English is fast becoming a style status among the youth. Also most of professional courses are taught in this language only.  Let us now have a look at the other various factors leading to the mushrooming of many English learning institutes: 

  • Travelling purpose: With the lowering of the travel fares, more and more number of people are travelling within India and abroad. While visiting such places the only language that can be spoken and understood is English. English language has gained a universal appeal, so any individual travelling to any parts of the world is quickly recognised and understood.
  • English, a must for all: Indians are over-hyped with the English language. Any individual with less knowledge in English is an alien to the Indian society. Thus, old or young, everybody has engulfed this language for personal as well as professional recognition.    
  • Emergence of MNCs: This century has witnessed the up coming of the Multi National Companies (MNC) as well as national and international call centres. Further, with globalisation, the need for travelling to a foreign destination for official purpose has also increased.  Nowadays, the only criterion in getting a job in MNC’s or BPO’s is to have excellent expertise in English language. Similarly, intelligent individuals working in big companies are denied their promotions on account of their being not fluent in the language.

Thus, knowing English is the need of the hour. As a result, more and more entrepreneurs are opting for taking up the franchise of language institutes. Moreover, most of these institutes are expanding rapidly via franchise route.

Franchising of language institutes

Till a few years back, the concept of English learning centres was at its nascent stage with only a few players in it. These were mostly unorganised and were run from homes as small businesses. But with the rising popularity of English among the youth and even the older generations, the training institutes established themselves and started franchising for gaining larger grounds and profits. After this development, the small unorganised home training centres were taken over by the organised and professional training institutes. These organised players offered experts and experienced language trainers to their students. Thereby franchising has provided the boost to the growth of the English training academics. As said by Preeti Malik, Sr. Vice President, Aptech Limited, “English language training contributes towards 33 per cent of the total vocational courses in India. With this, we are looking at the huge untapped segment in terms of universities and colleges. We are also in talks with state governments, some of whom have budgets set aside for training in English proficiency skills. In the words of Major KV Rajan, Executive Director, Veta, “Franchising has given us an insight into local academicals aspirations in various regions. Further we have become a national brand in a shorter duration.”

Key players in the field

The above given factors have given a huge impetus for the opening up of many English academics in the country. Till now the few players who have established themselves in the field of franchising are Hero Mindmine (The company offers English language training, soft professional skills development and personality building, where they focus on preparing the participants for industries like BPO, Retail, and Financial Services), Vita (this brand has 256 outlets nationally and 18 outlets internationally), Rusell’s Institute (Russell’s Spoken English Pvt. Ltd. is over 25 years old having more than 30 centers across India), English Express, launched by Aptech (It has commenced its franchises in 2009 and currently has four centres and plan to roll out around 80-100 centres in an year), Better Think, a unit of Top Careers & You (TCYonline) etc. Viewing the growing popularity of English language, it can be guaranteed that there will be more scope in the sector in the coming years.

Requisites of taking up a franchise

Starting an English training centre does not include a long list of requirements. Aspiring franchisees should be well-qualified and have a good location in mind. As informed by Malik, “While selecting a franchisee, we look for like-minded people who share our passion for reaching quality education to people. Most of our franchisees are professionally qualified. Since we are in the business of training and education, it is important that the franchisees are well-qualified, evolved individuals, and a strong customer orientation. A space of 900 -1200 sq.ft at a high visibility location would be required along with Rs 8 to 12 lakh of investment from the franchisee.” However, Rajan informed, “The investment required is Rs 3 to 8 lakh according to the brand choosen (veta or vetaone) and town selected. Most of our centres work during morning and evening hours, therefore franchisees should be able to spare time.”

To conclude it can be said that the future of English language is very secure. Having a franchise in this area will surely give high business benefits.   

Related: Risks & returns of going global

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