eLearning Outsourcing to India will reach USD 603 million by 2012

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I have always believed that the present economic slowdown would positively benefit the eLearning industry in the long run. There have been several recent surveys to suggest the same (two of them are mentioned in the latter half of this post) and now, a ValueNotes report released in May 2009 specifically examines the status of the Indian eLearning outsourcing industry and predicts a high rate of growth until 2012, despite the current recession.

The ValueNotes report, eLearning Outsourcing 2009: Advantage India, reveals that:

“Revenues from the Indian e-learning offshoring industry stand at approximately USD 341 million at the end of calendar year 2008. While the economic recession will impact the growth in the industry for the next 6-8 quarters, the market will recoup and grow much faster, until 2012. Taking these factors into account, our estimates suggest that the e-learning offshoring industry will grow at a CAGR of 15% till 2012, though growth will be more subdued till 2010. ValueNotes estimates the market size to touch $603 million by the end of calendar year 2012.”

I think the projected CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 15% in the next 4 years is on the low side. I anticipate the growth of some of the prominent Indian eLearning companies would be much more – anywhere between 25-50% p.a. This difference is probably because I believe the impact of economic recession may not last as long as 6-8 quarters. We at Upside Learning are certainly targeting to grow in excess of 50% over the next 4 years.

Here are a couple of other reports that had earlier suggested positive trends for eLearning growth:

Feb ’09: Driving Business Benefits – Towards Maturity
This was a comprehensive survey conducted during fall 2008 which investigated eLearning usage across 300 organizations in the UK. Using data collected during September, October, and November 2008, the report presented the following results:
Roughly 50% of respondents expected their training budget to stay more or less the same; about a quarter expected it to decrease; and another quarter expected it to increase.
64% of respondents expected the proportion spent on eLearning to increase.
About 68% of respondents expected to increase their overall eLearning spend.

Mar ’09: The Learning Resources Barometer in Uncertain Times – The Masie Center
62% responded that overall enterprise learning budgets have fallen either moderately or substantially.
51% responded that the volume of eLearning has increased moderately or substantially, while only 8% responded that it has decreased moderately or substantially.
75% responded that their training departments are doing the same or more with fewer resources – probably hinting at more outsourcing.

Looking at these data and trends, we feel overall confident about the growth of the Indian eLearning industry and eLearning outsourcing over the next 3-5 years.

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