Tai­lor-made for Africa

Finweek English Edition - - Educor -

EDUCOR EN­TERED Africa’s un­tapped private ed­u­ca­tion mar­ket in Septem­ber 2006 with its an­nounce­ment that it had es­tab­lished a sep­a­rate di­vi­sion to de­velop and pro­vide tai­lor-made ed­u­ca­tion so­lu­tions through­out the con­ti­nent.

“As Africa’s lead­ing provider of private ed­u­ca­tion, Educor is strate­gi­cally placed to tai­lor its ex­ist­ing brands and prod­ucts to the spe­cific needs of other African coun­tries,” says Peter Lehner, head of the new di­vi­sion, Educor Africa. “In so do­ing, Educor will help ful­fil a crit­i­cal need for ed­u­ca­tion and up­skilling on this de­vel­op­ing con­ti­nent.”

The group had been ex­plor­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties in Africa for more than two years, us­ing three coun­try se­lec­tion cri­te­ria: in­fra­struc­ture, ac­ces­si­bil­ity and eco­nomic strength.

Says Lehner: “To date the di­vi­sion has con­ducted re­search in An­gola, Botswana, Ghana, Mozam­bique, Namibia, Tan­za­nia, Uganda and Nige­ria. In its first agree­ment fol­low­ing those ex­plo­rations, Educor Africa re­cently be­gan pro­vid­ing cour­ses to the Na­tional Open Univer­sity of Nige­ria, the coun­try’s equiv­a­lent of Unisa, SA’s largest univer­sity.”

Sev­eral pro­grammes have al­ready been de­vel­oped, in­clud­ing en­tre­pre­neur­ial, call cen­tre agent and cell­phone re­pair cour­ses.

The di­vi­sion ex­am­ines the ed­u­ca­tional needs of those highly di­verse coun­tries and ad­justs its ex­ist­ing of­fer­ings into po­ten­tial work­able busi­ness mod­els, says Lehner. “As with Educor’s SA op­er­a­tion, we’re able to of­fer dis­tance learn­ing, face-to-face ed­u­ca­tion and blended learn­ing – a com­bi­na­tion of mul­ti­ple ap­proaches to teach­ing or learn­ing that can be of­fered to cor­po­rates or in­di­vid­u­als.”

In ad­di­tion, Educor Africa of­fers ed­u­ca­tional con­sult­ing ser­vices, its ex­per­tise, course ma­te­rial and re­sources based on a re­gion’s or part­ner­ship’s need.

Educor MD Hen­nie Louw says the prob­lem in the past had been that ed­u­ca­tion providers had ex­panded into Africa with a homemade so­lu­tion, mostly de­vel­oped in and for a de­vel­oped mar­ket, that promised a lot but then quickly moved out. “The key to avoid­ing that is to iden­tify the cor­rect model for a par­tic­u­lar coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion.”

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