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Job upskilling & reskilling sector leads Southeast Asia EdTech startup scene

There’s a noticeable trend in upskilling and reskilling the workforce from EdTech startups providing learning technology innovations in Southeast Asia. 

“There are innovations popping up for organizations that are working with companies on broad work for skills mapping,” explained Maria Spies, a Co-CEO and Co-Founder of HolonIQ, an education technology market insights platform.

“So models that are working with organizations who do not want to fire a whole bunch of people because they don’t have the right skills and then go find a whole bunch of new people who have the right skills. What they want to do is understand what they’ve got and then upskill the gap,” Maria said, during her remarks at LEARNTech Asia Virtual Conference 2020.

Fifty EdTech companies are highlighted as the most innovative in the region by HolonIQ. One country stood out from its neighbors.

“Indonesia’s going gangbusters in EdTech,” said Maria. “There’s lots of support for EdTech. It’s obviously a big youth population. The government is also taking steps to encourage and provide incentives around the uptake of technology-based learning.”

The HolonIQ Southeast Asia EdTech 50 reveals new players in ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) gaining the attention of students, parents, policymakers, and investors. They were chosen from about 900 education technology companies across Southeast Asia.

Southeast Asia’s EdTech scene has seen nearly US$480 million of venture capital from over 200 individual investments over the last five years. The region’s ecosystem is robust with opportunities for startups to seek mentoring from industry leaders and incubators.

In the new normal, the e-learning sector sees an opportunity for great growth. SkillsFuture Singapore, a statutory board promoting lifelong learning under the Ministry of Education, doesn’t expect all learning will just take place online. Hybrid modes — both online-offline education structures — will be established for the future of continuing education and training.

Workforce, skills and jobs lead in the Southeast Asia EdTech 50. Image by HolonIQ

“We’re not analyzing these organizations based on the impact they’re having on learning. That’s not our role. We’re at the organization level,” said Maria.

“We look at what’s the market for the area they’re in, the relative attractiveness of the market,” Maria explained.

“The product itself — is it unique and fits into that market? The expertise and diversity of the team and also the organization’s ability to generate or secure funding in order to be sustainable, the momentum of the organization, the uptake of learners.”

HolonIQ has also released their 2021 Global EdTech landscape with a visualization of the educational technology ecosystem.

Southeast Asian companies involved in Language Learning, Learner Support, Work Upskilling, LMS/SIS, STEAM and Coding, Financing, Skills Verification, and more can be found amongst the 50 cited by HolonIQ below:

Language Learning

1 on 1 English Based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, 1 on 1 English is helping learners from ages six to 16 years old connect easily with native North American teachers in private, premium one on one English classes at home.

Bahaso.com Established in Indonesia in January 2015, Bahaso is helping people who want to learn foreign languages ​​in a more effective, efficient, and flexible way. This includes a live teaching feature where users can get online guidance and social media features to support learning platforms.

Cakap Indonesia’s CAKAP enables people to upgrade their language skills from anywhere, at any time. They offer two-way learning interaction between students and professional teachers around the world.

Elsa has its regional office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Their vision is to enable everyone to speak foreign languages with full confidence, which helps to reach a better life and career opportunities.

Globish is a Thailand-based online English learning service with a dedicated English language school. It offers opportunities to learn English online with foreign teachers, live, 24 hours a day.

Kidtopi is an online English learning platform geared toward young learners in Vietnam. The platform is a venture from Topica Edtech Group, a venture-backed, growth-focused EdTech startup.

Singapore based LingoAce is a provider in online Chinese language learning platform fosix to 15 year old students. From mastering the basics to communicating fluently, their online methodology focuses on retention and speed learning in a familiar and structured classroom-style setting.

Squiline is an Indonesian provider of online language training, including creating white label course modules for companies.

Yola is an education group in Vietnam with the mission of changing lives through education. With 30,000+ students and blended online & offline programs for academic English and life skills, they believe in a future of Vietnamese young generations realizing their potentials and contributing back to our society.

Skills & Jobs

ArcLab is Singapore based, believing in training effectively with nano learning and upskilling workforce job performance through mobile learning. ArcLab believes in delivering bite-sized modules to staff with no app needed to remotely onboard and upskill workers.

Conicle was founded in 2014 in Thailand, providing businesses with an all-in-one learning solution to help upskilling and reskilling the workforce through its learning management system (LMS). Its technology takes a data-driven approach to learning, personalizing content to each user.

EngageRocket is headquartered in Singapore and offers cloud-based software that helps leaders and organizations make better people decisions using real-time data. Through cultural change, organizational transformation, mergers, and acquisitions, companies use EngageRocket to monitor and improve employee engagement and productivity.  

Edukasyon.ph is based in the Philippines. The company provides students and fresh graduates with tools to connect them to schools, find scholarships, learn online, and match skills to courses and jobs.

FutureLab is headquartered in Malaysia, connecting mentees and mentors anywhere, anytime. Through FutureLab’s platform, mentors and mentees connect as they seek a path of personal growth and career advancements.

Glints is a Singapore-based career discovery and development platform. It’s aim is to be the #1 full-stack tech-enabled human resource and career development company in Southeast Asia. 

Gnowbe with its regional office in Singapore is a microlearning platform, created to empower content creators, thought leaders, and trainers from organizations to scale experiential, participatory learning on mobile to develop real skills and change mindsets and behaviors.

Hacktiv8 is the leading coding boot camp in Jakarta, Indonesia, that turns absolute beginners into job-ready developers. Hactiv8 offers to transform beginners into full-stack developers in 12 weeks. They are working to alleviate the developer crunch in Jakarta with the emerging trend of tech companies and also significantly improve the standard of web developers in Indonesia.

Kyna.vn is an e-learning platform for adults offering online learning courses in Vietnam.

Maubelajarapa is an online marketplace platform that makes it easy for learners to find and register for vocational classes that have been created by teachers in Indonesia. Maubelajarapa has 1000 teachers, offering more than 1,000 workshops each year, and has served more than 70,000 learners so far.

SkillLane is a digital training platform in Thailand providing digital training, upskilling and reskilling to professionals with a library of over 400 courses in information technology, office productivity, soft skills, languages, and business skills that are accessible anywhere and anytime.

Vonder is a Thai EdTech startup aiming to make learning more fun and interactive. Vonder builds a game-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) where educators and HR managers can manage knowledge through chatbot, create real-time pulse survey, and generate microlearning games within a few minutes.

STEAM & Coding

CoderSchool is based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, driving frontier technologies in Vietnam through education. CoderSchool provides coding courses, mentorship and job placement.

Everest Education aims to transform education in Vietnam by personalizing learning and preparing students academically and mentally for international education. The startup helps students enter overseas education programs and succeed in international academic environments using technology and learning centers.

KooBits is Singapore-based, developing digital tools and platforms to help children learn better. Co-developed with top educators and experts in child development, KooBits learning contents are age-appropriate, relevant, and aligned to the latest education curriculum and syllabus.

Singapore based Joni.AI drives students towards mastery at their own pace with personalized learning and enables them to learn at their zone of proximal development. Their mobile‐first, interactive platform sparks the joy of learning with graduated mastery, personalized interactions, and social learning.

Morphoo is an Indonesia-based learning platform, offering a science-learning app for K-6 students, with an extensive library of 2D animated videos, 3D interactive, hands-on activities, and assessment quizzes. 

Higher Education

Cialfo is a Singapore-based college application platform, making the process simple, straight-forward, and pleasant. Cialfo believes that everybody should have an equal opportunity to participate in the future.

Easyuni.com is based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and has brought over 3,000 universities and colleges from over 20 countries onto one website, helping students and parents search, compare and connect with university counselors.

EMERITUS Institute of Management is Singapore based, offering online certificates and programs in collaboration with MIT Sloan, Columbia Business School, Columbia Engineering, Cambridge Judge Business School & Tuck at Dartmouth. Their teaching pedagogy focuses heavily on peer-to-peer learning and learning by doing.

GoKampus is an Indonesia-based platform providing integrated services for student campus life in one digitized ecosystem

HarukaEDU is an EdTech startup focusing on building a lifelong learning platform for Indonesians. Their team consists of professionals with various backgrounds and lots of passion for lifelong learning.

Topica Edtech Group is based in Hanoi, Vietnam, and cooperates with 16 universities including top-tier institutions in the USA, Philippines, and Vietnam to provide online degree programs. Topica Native provides online English speech tutoring courses in Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam, and launched an Augmented Reality app for speech tutoring.

Education Financing

Cicil is a financing platform to address the credit needs of university students in Indonesia.

ErudiFi is based in Indonesia and the Philippines, enabling access to equal opportunities through education. Their platforms include Bukas in the Philippines and Danacita in Indonesia.

Pintek is a financial technology company aiming to democratise access to education in Indonesia through affordable and flexible credit.


Accredify works with GovTech Singapore to promote the adoption of OpenCerts Schema. They are helping institutes issue tamper-proof digital certificates to help maintain their brand integrity and protect their students.

Singapore based Aversafe provides decentralized credential verification by connecting individuals, employers, universities, and credential issuers through a single, secure, self-sovereign identity platform designed to reduce risk in the hiring process.

Management & Learning Environments

Indonesia-based Codemi is a web-based Learning Management System (LMS) that enables companies to manage their online training programs for employees and partners to improve their skills.

Edusuite is based in the Philippines, using AI to analyze data and resources of colleges and universities so that school administrators, faculty, and students can optimize resources and make smart decisions.

Indonesia based GREDU is a social EdTech platform that aims to increase the level of engagement in a school environment to improve the overall schooling experience for teachers, parents, and students.

Quintal is an academic portal built to serve schools in Indonesia. Quintal integrated the Learning Management System and Student Information System to create a unified academic portal that is easy to use for administrators, teachers, students, and parents.

Teamie is a Singapore based cloud-based social platform that drives collaboration, improves educator productivity, and institutional performance.

Wizlearn Technologies (formerly ASKnLearn Pte Ltd) is based in Singapore and provides web-based e-learning solutions, content, and services for over 220 educational institutions internationally.

Learner Support, Tutoring, Test Prep

Colearn creates future-ready educational content for all students. Their mission is to make Indonesia competitive on a global stage through its young generation.  

Manabie is based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and is Manabie is on a mission to provide a new style of online and offline merged learning around the world. Manable believes that their method of learning by integrating online and offline will dramatically innovate the way students learn.

OpenDurian is a Thailand-based online learning platform supporting students preparing for English language competency exams for job placement. 

Pahamify offers supplementary education materials to help Indonesian students pass their college entrance exams. The startup combines science learning, filmmaking, and gamification to create high-quality educational content under its “Pahamiframework” method. The platform utilizes animated videos, quizzes, and summaries to engage users.

Ruangguru is based in Indonesia focusing on education-based services. Ruangguru has more than 15 million users, managing more than 300,000 teachers offering services in more than 100 subject areas, and has collaborated with 32 (out of 34) provincial governments and more than 326 municipal and district governments in Indonesia.

Zenius Education is based in Jakarta, Indonesia, producing e-learning content for K-12 students, which covers education materials from primary to secondary school as well as preparation for the national exam and university entrance test. 

LEARNTech Asia
LEARNTech Asia showcases innovation in learning in Asia. We feature stories and resources in online learning, workplace learning, adult education, EdTech, and creative solutions by teachers and trainers in learning institutions, non-profits, and enterprises that enhance human capacity and inspire communities of lifelong learners.