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iScholar

To help Students excel in academics & earn part-time income

Nigeria
Market: Education, training, Artificial Intelligence
Stage of the project: Prototype or product is ready

Date of last change: 01.11.2020
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Idea

iScholar is an AI-powered Learning Ecosystem that helps University Students improve Academic Performance, access Scholarship opportunities and earn part-time income on-campus

The Solutions in the iScholar Ecosystem are:
1) StudyBuddy: summarizes ebooks, academic journals, websites and generates Q&A from the materials; tracks Students performance on the Q&A
2) CampusBuddy: is a Study Scheduler and Reminder for Students! Notifies them of Scholarship opportunities, and part-time/online jobs to earn money on-Campus
3) ResearchBuddy: lets Students perform Search of Scholarly Publications

Current Status

CURRENT PROJECT STATUS - Public Beta

OUR PROGRESS
*** MVP Launched 6 weeks ago to 247 self-registered Early Access Users
*** Current Userbase stands at 4,500 Users. Growth was driven by multiple Referrals by Early Access Users and those they Referred
*** Zero (0) Marketing Dollars spent

THE GROWTH HACK WE IMPLEMENTED
*** We incentivized our Early Access Users (and those they Referred) to refer their friends
*** We touted our App's Premium Subscription advantages over the FREE Subscriptions (since we have a FREEMIUM Revenue Model)
*** Users were asked to Refer upto 12 friends each and get 1-month Premium Subscription when each user subscribes (limited to a max of 1-Year Subscription)
*** Their Invited Friends are to get 1-month Premium Subscription each (for Signing up) and can also refer their friends and get more monthly subscriptions
*** This creates a WIN-WIN incentive for ALL Users to signup to our service

Market

OUR MARKET SIZE
• UNESCO 2014 global enrolment count (https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000247862) indicates that the number of students in Colleges/Universities worldwide rose from 100 million (in 2000) to 207 million (in 2014)
• Assume our Annual Subscription to be as LOW as $69/Year for our suite:
• Assume that we can capture ONLY 1% of the globally-enrolled students:
Then our Serviceable Obtainable Market (SOM) equals:
o 207,000,000 (users) x 0.01 x $69 = $142.8 million (annually)

OUR SERVICEABLE OBTAINABLE MARKET (IN PERSPECTIVE)
*** 1% of the Total Enrolled students globally = 2million students (approx)
*** This is less than the number of students in Universities in Nigeria, and it's a number we can easily achieve by expanding to about 3 countries (Nigeria + Ghana + Kenya for instance)

Problem or Opportunity

OUR USERS
*** Our Users are University Students and millions of Students suffer from Learning Challenges caused by Dyslexia and which results in Poor Academic Performance
*** Students from low-income families most times drop out of college due to several factors which include their inability to Afford College Tuition
*** Personally, I came from a low-income family and my dad immediately I got Admissions into the University. I had to combine my studies with full-time entrepreneurship in order to pay my tuition through college
*** A lot of Students in my similar situation aren't that much lucky and had to drop of School

HOW WE KNOW PEOPLE NEED WHAT WE ARE MAKING
We've grown from approximately 250 users to 4,500 in 5 weeks of launching our product and our growth is mainly through User Referrals and no marketing dollars have been spent

Solution (product or service)

iScholar is an AI-powered Learning Ecosystem that helps University Students improve Academic Performance; access Scholarship opportunities and earn part-time income on-campus.

The Solutions in the iScholar Ecosystem are:
1) StudyBuddy: summarizes ebooks, academic journals, websites and generates Q&A from the materials; tracks Students performance on the Q&A and automatically recommends revision and further study based on their performance
2) CampusBuddy: is an AI chatbot that tutors Students on any topic; Schedules and Reminds them to Study; Notifies them of Scholarship opportunities, and part-time/online jobs to earn money while on-Campus
3) ResearchBuddy: lets Students perform Academic Search of Scholarly Publications Database from Researchers at top Universities in the World and Technology Companies (Google, Microsoft, etc.). It makes citations easy as ABC

Competitors

OUR COMPETITORS
• Documents Summarization services companies (eSummarizer, Smmry, etc.)
• Other websites that offer Scholarship Listings

Advantages or differentiators

OUR DIFFERENTIATION
• We offer an Integrated suite of solutions that addresses Students needs
• We are the ONLY platform that helps students improve their academic performance - as well as provide them access to Scholarships and part-time income-earning opportunities
• We believe that as long as we focus on comprehensively solving the CORE needs of students in Africa we will continue to grow our business.

WHAT WE KNOW THAT OUR COMPETITORS DON'T UNDERSTAND YET
1) The poverty rate in Nigeria (and Africa in general) is very high, and the economic crisis from COVID-19 has worsened the situation.

2) EVERYONE KNOWS THAT EDUCATION IS VERY IMPORTANT. But we initially launched with ONLY the feature that helps Students to improve their Academic Performance and (surprisingly) failed to gain reasonable traction.

3) Once we iterated our idea and added access to Scholarship and part-time income-earning opportunities, WE IMMEDIATELY SAW AN ALMOST 20x INCREASE IN OUR USER SIGNUPS

4) From our findings, no other company in the Learning and Development space offers these 3 important combos - AND WE BELIEVE THAT IT WILL BE A BIG HIT IN AFRICA

Business model

BUSINESS MODEL - HOW WE WILL MAKE MONEY (FREEMIUM )
• Ads Revenue: from Users with PERPETUAL license to our FREE Apps and TRIAL license to our premium solutions
• Yearly Premium Subscription: from Users with a PERPETUAL license to our FREE Apps, and UNLIMITED license to our premium solutions

WHEN WE WILL START MAKING MONEY
*** We hope to come out of Public Beta to GA by Jan 2021
*** We have started sensitizing the Users of our upcoming subscription billing
*** Using FOMO Strategy, we have asked them to refer upto 12 of their friends to signup so they can acquire upto 12months subscription and avoid missing out on ALL the premium features they are enjoying FREE for now

Money will be spent on

1) Building out more Advanced Features to our Suite
2) Growth of our Startup Brand

Offer for investor

OFFER FOR INVESTORS
*** We are willing to offer 7.5% Share of our Company for a $250,000 Investment

Team or Management

Incubation/Acceleration programs accomplishment

1) TONY ELUMELU FOUNDATION 2019 - https://www.tonyelumelufoundation.org/
*** Our startup was among the 1,000 selected from over 216,000 applications by Startups from 54 African countries

2) YCOMBINATOR STARTUP SCHOOL 2019:
*** We successfully completed the YCombinator SUS 2019 cohort

3) Mozilla Builders Summer MVP Lab - https://builders.mozilla.community/
*** We just completed the Mozilla Builders Open Lab Summer 2020 cohort wh ere we launched our MVP to over 200 Early Access Users who joined our Waitlist

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