Byju Raveendran is the CEO and founder of BYJU’s, India’s largest EdTech Company that is reinventing how students learn, through its learning app. Born to teacher parents in Azhikode, Kerala, from a young age, Byju was a self-learner who developed different learning methods to understand concepts better. He is also an avid player (knows to play 6 games), who believes that children can learn a lot more outside the classrooms by playing multiple games. A two-time CAT topper and National Math Olympiad winner, he started Byju’s with the vision to help students fall in love with learning and change the way India learns.View All Speakers
Byju Raveendran is the Founder and CEO of India’s largest Ed-tech Company, BYJU’s, that is reinventing how students learn, through its learning app. An entrepreneur by chance and a teacher by choice, Byju is a two-time CAT 100 percentile holder and National Math Olympiad winner.
Byju took the CAT exam in 2003 with his friends and scored 100 percentile. However, he decided against pursuing an MBA. He was working as a service engineer abroad back then and all of this happened during the 2 month break that he got from his job.
In 2005, he wrote the CAT exam without any preparation yet again and scored a 100 percentile again. However unlike last time, he appeared for IIM-A,B,C interviews and cleared all of them. This was when he realized that there was something special about the way he approached CAT which sets him apart from the lakhs who prepared and appeared for the exam under so much pressure.
Byju saw potential in helping students prepare for CAT rather than doing an MBA himself. He started BYJU’s CAT classes in 2008. His unique teaching style and focus on learning made him a household brand amongst students and parents in a span of 4 years. Soon, he was jettisoning across the country teaching a large number of students, not in classrooms, but in auditoriums and stadiums.
In-between his trips, he was in touch with some of the best minds in the country (crème-de-la-crème) who were preparing for CAT. The key management and the core team at BYJU’S was formed by his students – some of them who went on to join the IIMs and would eventually find their final calling in Education and come back to join Byju, while some of them would stay on and join him immediately in this mission of changing the way people learn.
Byju, who is considered to be India’s No.1 CAT trainer, is proud to have sent more than 1523 students to the IIMs alone in the last three years.
From his test prep experience, Byju realized that if he really wanted to make a dent in India’s education system, he would have to do it at the K-12 level, when students are grappling with fundamentals. Also, he harnessed the power of technology, which could offer him access to a large number of students together.
In the year 2009, Byju undertook his first experiment with technology by launching online video based learning for CAT through VSAT. In 2011, the company was incorporated (Think and Learn PVt Ltd) with focus on the k-12 space.
However, the real breakthrough was in 2015 with the launch of the BYJU’s learning app which has seen a phenomenal engagement, with 5 million downloads. The learning app makes use of original content, watch-and-learn videos, rich animations and interactive simulations that, as opposed to rote memorization, make learning contextual and visual. The app also adapts to the unique learning style of each student, inviting them to explore different concepts.
As he rightly says, “If you want to make a real impact on the way students learn, if you want to make them fall in love with learning, you need to start early—when they start feeling the subject, the crucial years which form the strong foundation for lifelong learning.”
Apart from being a passionate teacher, Byju also likes travelling and experiencing new things.