These weeks are super exciting here at the eFaqt HQ. Our founders Timon Rutten and Chris Henny have just shortly returned from one of the most important education conferences, Educause, which took place in the sunny city of Anaheim, California (USA). So we took the chance and interviewed them about the inside secrets of Educause:
What did you find when you arrived to the conference?
The conference was focused on innovative companies around education, starting from learning platforms (e.g. Blackboard), publishers (e.g. Pearson, McGraw Hill) to major tech companies such as Google, Dropbox, etc. You could feel that Educause is a truly global edtech (‘education technology’) gathering of the biggest players in our industry. Luckily, we have met many school directors and IT managers who were looking for software like eFaqt to implement.
What was your goal with visiting Educause?
We are looking to expand our list of partners. Startups can usually grow faster when they tie-up with larger corporations who have less innovation power but have access to large markets. We already work together with some large companies in Europe, but we are looking for distributers who can help to launch eFaqt overseas. Of course, we were also very excited to see and try new innovative products.
Tell us something surprising!
It was really strange to see that very few companies focused on the needs of the students. Most suppliers aimed to support the management of the educational institution, in terms of administrations and logistics. We believe that the real innovation in education will come from start ups that empower students with great content and the right skills.
What did you find most inspirational about the conference?
It’s very inspiring to see fast growing companies in the educational field, like Canvas. They disrupt the LMS (‘learning management system’) industry with a teacher-first, cloud based solution which gives app builders the opportunity to connect to their platform. This way, companies like eFaqt can grow with the user base of Canvas. For example, teachers on Canvas could give assignments to their students via eFaqt. Similarly, connecting with other online services (e.g. Dropbox, Google Drive) has the potential to increase our product offering.
So, what is next step for eFaqt?
Next week we will be attending EdtechAsia in Singapore, where all the big parties in Asia will get together to meet each other. Like in Anaheim, we are looking to meet potential distribution partners but also investors in the field.
Educause 2016, in pictures