As an Education Technology (EdTech) company, Manabie has a unique operating model that merges online and offline learning to maximize the efficiency of online-based education. In addition to a mobile app that allows high-school students across Vietnam to study online, Manabie also has five learning centers in Ho Chi Minh City, where students can receive the dedicated guidance from individual counselors.
With more than 350,000 app downloads after just one year of launching, Manabie has demonstrated impressive growth in an endeavor to re-innovate the experience of online learning for Vietnamese students. This investment round includes the participation of Do Ventures, Genesia Ventures, Chiba Dojo, and other investors with a total capital of $3M.
In Japan and other developed countries, it is not enough for students to study with their subject teachers but also to have a school counselor. These counselors play a crucial role in guiding students to setting specific goals for college entrance examinations and career choices; developing customized learning plans to best fit each student’s goals; and giving students bits of advice that keep them motivated and inspired, both academically and personally.
Therefore, Japan’s online teaching centers pioneered the model of online-merge-offline (OMO), in which students can study online while having close support from the counselors at the offline centers. Also, an ideal teaching approach must be able to adjust and design tailored learning courses that match each student’s abilities and aspirations. With this in mind, teaching centers in Japan have long applied high technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning in building suitable learning programs for each of their students.
Applying the Japanese approach, Manabie provides the only OMO model in Vietnam today, including a mobile app and a network of offline centers where students can come and study under the guidance of a team of highly specialized tutors and counselors. Manabie’s counselors closely follow their students’ entire learning process to make specific adjustments and directions based on the students’ actual performance in their classes. Moreover, the offline centers are where students can meet with their peers who have the same goals and aspirations in learning, thereby creating cohesion and motivation for everyone to improve their knowledge.
One of Manabie’s outstanding strengths is its high-quality learning content with the communication methods based on experiences from Japan. The platform’s available subjects include Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, and English – all taught in vividly illustrated video format and based on real-life situations. Thanks to AI and Machine Learning, Manabie can recognize the abilities and specific needs of each student, thereby designing a tailored study program for each individual.
Present in the Vietnamese market since January of 2020, Manabie is led by the Japanese co-founder and CEO Takuya Homma, who has 10 years of experience in education and a deep understanding of the Southeast Asian market. Takuya was a founding member of Quipper, which was later acquired by Recruit – Japan’s largest HR company that is currently listing on the Tokyo Stock Exchange with a market cap of more than $85B. Manabie’s other co-founder is Christy, who worked in several senior positions at Hong Kong’s major investment and consulting firms before joining Lazada’s founding team in 2012. After only one year of operation in Vietnam, Manabie has raised an investment of $4.8M.
“Having studied and worked in Japan myself, I have always been impressed by the way the Japanese educational culture creates highly disciplined and independent individuals. Manabie has outstanding execution capabilities and is capable of bringing the quality of Japanese education, which has long been appreciated by the world, back to Vietnam.” – Nguyen Manh Dung, General Partner of Do Ventures, expressed his opinions about the investment in Manabie.
Do Ventures believes that the Manabie platform will help facilitate certain advantageous conditions to spark a love for learning, and help our children realize their full potential.
In addition to educational products for students, Manabie also provides an innovative solution for Vietnamese teachers, called ‘Manabie Teaching Empower.’ This toolkit will help improve the teachers’ expertise in education and training to empower them on the path of transition from mass education to personalized education. Manabie’s comprehensive approach is the catalyst to form the bonding among the school, teachers, students, and their parents.”
Regarding Manabie’s plans in 2021, CEO Takuya Homma said: “Vietnam is a market full of opportunities for EdTech as Vietnamese parents pay great attention to investing in their children’s education. Manabie hopes to be able to contribute to shaping a new educational method for Vietnamese students, in which they have the opportunity to express their strengths, creativity, and achieve complete development intellectually and mentally. In the coming time, we will continue to scale up the Manabie model, with a focus on improving the user experience at a reasonable cost to create positive impacts on the learner community.
ABOUT DO VENTURES
Do Ventures is a $50M early-stage venture capital fund that serves as a strategic partner for startups. Leveraging the current favorable demographic in Vietnam, Do Ventures seeks investment opportunities in technology startups with outstanding execution capabilities that can develop meaningful products and services that improve the lives of consumers in Vietnam and Southeast Asia.
Do Ventures is co-founded by Dzung Nguyen and Vy Le, experts with unique insights into the Vietnam market and extensive experience in developing multi-million businesses. Prior to forming Do Ventures, Dzung Nguyen and Vy Le left CyberAgent Capital and ESP Capital respectively to start a new journey to bring about more positive effects on the startup ecosystem in Vietnam.
With the philosophy of “Grow by Doing”, Do Ventures believes that for a startup to grow rapidly and outpace the competition, its founders must have an outstanding execution ability and be willing to do more to find out more opportunities to figure out the proper formula for sustainable development.