Major assessment organization ETS announced it will open a subsidiary in India, a market that has drawn a torrent of interest from U.S. education companies and investors in recent years.
The new subsidiary, called ETS India, will focus on building upon the foundation of assessment products that the organization has been offering for years in the nation with a population of 1.3 billion, where demand for higher-quality education among schools and families continues to soar.
Those tests include GRE, and the TOEFL and TOEIC tests – which measure English-language skills for students and in work environments, and which ETS says are already widely used across India.
The nonprofit organization, founded in 1947 and headquartered in New Jersey, intends to pursue expansion in India through its English language learning and its postsecondary products.
“These continue to be two areas we see as huge opportunities to grow our support of the education community and contribute to the Indian higher education sector,” Mohammad Kousha, associate vice president of Global Growth at ETS, said in an e-mail to EdWeek Market Brief.
“ETS India will allow us to expand partnerships with education companies in India,” he added, “and we are eager to build these collaborations that will improve our ability to serve our test takers, partners and institutions at a high-level.”
Over the past few years, huge amounts of venture capital have poured into India’s ed-tech space, as investors have bet that companies touting products covering a variety of areas will capitalize upon demand for higher-quality lessons and new skills to bolster workplace opportunities. Major India-based companies like Byju’s — which has stated ambitions for entering the U.S. education market — and Unacademy are among the fastest-growing players.
At the same time, some education companies from the U.S. and other markets have sought to establish a foothold in India, despite the country’s hugely decentralized array of public and private school networks with divergent academic needs and levels of spending power.
ETS has had a presence in India for decades, mostly focused on providing assessments that allow students in the country to pursue education and work opportunities, Kousha said.
The organization’s products gained have gained name recognition over time, and an office in the country will help ETS “further strengthen and foster our presence in-country, which is equipped with a well-accomplished team to support ETS operations,” he said.
ETS has a strong international presence, delivering products and services to 180 countries.
Lejo Sam Oommen, a former Pearson official, will lead ETS India as managing director, a role in which he will develop and implement the company’s growth strategy.
Image by Getty