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Eduson raises $1 million (765,000 euro) and seeks to offer professionals an online alternative to expensive MBA programs. Eduson is the latest project from serial entrepreneur Elena Masolova. In this instance, the $1 million raised by the company comes from business Angels. Among them are investors from Groupon Russia, which Masolova co-founded back in 2010.
The company says that the courses that they’re offering are designed and offered by professors from top business schools, guest speakers, and free courses, which use existing content from notable international businessmen and women.
For now, the company’s courses range in price from free to $99 (76 euro). The company says that ⅓ of their courses will be offered for free, while most are fee-based. Royalties are paid to those who provide the content for the courses.
According to their own site, Eduson has competitors in distance-learning services like Lynda, 2U, and Coursera, among others. From Russia, we did a post back in October on TeachBase, a distance-learning service which has received financial backing from The Moscow Seed Fund. The difference, they claim, is that Eduson is uniquely geared towards professionals with online business courses. The company’s CEO, Daria Zimina, says that the inspiration for this business comes from the fact that millions of managers and entrepreneurs in the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) need to acquire and develop business skills, but are shut out of many top business schools because they lack the resources or possibly the grades to gain acceptance.
In terms of the company’s future, Masolova says that they’re planning to add at least one new course every week and that they intend to introduce features like a networking tool for alumni, a rating of students in the class, and interactive videos. The networking tool will include profiles for each student and the videos are designed to allow students to receive explanations of problems which they failed to correctly solve.
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