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Jun, 2021     

Vietnam Edtech : Cracking The K-12 Puzzle

Edtech players need to re-think their value proposition and focus around the gap areas in order to capitalise on the massive edtech opportunity


1. Vietnam ranks above most of its regional counterparts when it comes to K-12 enrolment rates and PISA scores

Education is deeply rooted in the cultural values of Vietnam. Studying has traditionally been considered one of the very few ways to change one’s life, and this mentality remains unchanged for a large part of Vietnam’s society. This mindset gets reflected in the high enrolment rates and PISA scores.

Vietnam’s government has also undertaken bold reforms to ensure high enrolment rates, advance human capital development and modernize education to meet the needs of the country’s industrialization in a global environment.

K-12 enrollment rates, %

PISA Scores

2. The spend on supplementary education in K-12 is extremely high which highlights the importance placed by parents on school education, making it a lucrative segment for EdTech

The high value that Vietnam’s society attaches to education gets reflected in their spending. Household spend on education in Vietnam continues to be at par with developed economies like Singapore. Parents focus a lot on ensuring quality education for their children and hence spend substantially on private tutoring. The high willingness to pay for education was also reflected in the sales of mobile phones and laptops in the wake of Covid as parents in Vietnam wanted to ensure that the education of their ward remained unaffected. Therefore, the opportunity for edtech players is massive.

Household expenditure on education, % of total household expenditure

3. Within K-12 segment, adoption of live classes remains limited owing to individual teachers dominating this segment

Despite the massive opportunity within the K-12 edtech segment, edtech players have been able to just scratch the surface as more than 90% of the students who use online education take live classes from individual teachers. These individual teachers are among the most popular teachers in Vietnam and have a robust user base which is managed via Facebook groups and the classes are conducted using Facebook Live. As a result, new-age edtech players have not been able to penetrate this segment and most of their revenues are derived from pre-recorded sessions.

Vietnam K-12 Formal Online Education Market Size by offering, $ Mn, CY20 

Player Overview – Post K-12 EdTech

4. Edtech players need to re-think their value proposition and focus around the gap areas in order to capitalise on the massive edtech opportunity

To crack the opportunity within the Edtech space, new-age edtech players need to sharpen their value proposition and base it around the key need gaps in the system. Pushing sales of pre-recorded sessions in smaller cities that lack access to quality content or designing products that enable 2-way interaction can help in deeper penetration within the K-12 segment. On the other hand, internationally accredited courses that focus on employability can help in tapping the post-K-12 opportunity effectively.