EduGrowth launched a syndicate program in early 2019 to connect leading EdTech and education executives in Sydney and Melbourne to drive collaboration. Syndicates aim to build trust among participants to accelerate the growth of individual businesses through shared experience and advance the EdTech ecosystem as a whole.
Success for this program will come from the benefits gained by participants.
“When syndicate members are actually having direct conversations, when they are meeting independently outside the meetings, when they are leveraging each others expertise, that’s when the real value will come,” says David Linke, EduGrowth Managing Director.
Each Syndicate is facilitated by an independent chair with extensive education and entrepreneurial experience. The Chair crafts the narrative across the year, they set the topics for discussion, and provide insight into what to explore to benefit the group. The Chair’s goal, as an experienced EdTech entrepreneur, is to help the established and growing entrepreneurs in the syndicate take their business to the next level. Between meetings, the chair is a support person, offering syndicate members mentorship and guidance, a key resource that has experienced the many challenges faced by an EdTech Entrepreneur.
The first 6 months of the ClearPath Syndicate program has seen a fantastic group of EdTech entrepreneurs in Melbourne and Sydney attend to begin the collaboration process. The group have truly dived deep into the business challenges they face seeking feedback from the group’s experience. The initial phase has helped us iterate quickly to find a model which works best.
So far, the syndicates have featured some valuable speakers, offering expertise and promoting conversation and discussion among participants. Guests include Sean Steele, CEO of private equity group EdVenture Co., who are building a large investment portfolio of education companies focussed on the future of work, and taking Australian education into Asia. Sean discussed the characteristics of the education companies they seek to acquire, the due diligence process they undertake, and the reasons some companies fall out of due diligence.
Rita Ferrandino, a global edtech leader who has spent many decades as an edtech sales leader running large multi-billion dollar sales teams, was another guest speaker. Rita co-founded ARC Capital, who are both investors, and offer sales, marketing and operational support to edtech companies looking to enter the US market. Rita’s presentation covered the nuances of selling to schools and universities in the US, as well as discussing what a traditional, average deal flow looks like for an edtech company in the US, from seed capital to Series A to Series B.
The group also benefited from a presentation by Robert Gregory, Senior Partner & Education Sector Leader of Maddocks who discussed Privacy and Data Security Issues. His presentation covered the Australian Privacy Principles (APP), how they connect with Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The session outlined what companies need to think about to make themselves compliant with the APP and then potentially the GDPR of they are selling to European customers.
Over the coming months, we’ll see a new phase to the syndicate program; that is, to bring education providers into the room.
Universities, schools and government officials who are incredibly important to building the ecosystem, their inclusion will help strengthen the program and the benefits for members. The program is due to launch in Brisbane before the end of 2019 and Perth in early 2020.
EduGrowth Syndicate program is an executive level or senior leadership opportunity that promotes thought leadership, personal and business development. Contact us to see if joining a syndicate is right for you. https://edugrowth.org.au/programs/clearpath/ceosyndicates/