Irish firm Prodigy Learning, the award-winning EdTech business providing digital skills certifications and learning solutions, has entered the Asia Pacific market with the opening of an office in Sydney, Australia and the announcement of a partnership with Microsoft Australia to support their digital skills and STEM programmes in education.
With existing offices in Dublin and London, this development makes Prodigy the only multi-region global player in its sector and one of Ireland’s leading exponents in the fast-growing Education Technology (EdTech) sector. Export is a key driver of the Company’s growth, now representing over 70% of the business.
The announcement comes as Prodigy Learning participates in the Enterprise Ireland trade mission to Australia and New Zealand. Enterprise Ireland has set a target to grow exports outside of the UK by 50 per cent by 2020 and the Asia-Pacific market is now a key focus. The Australian EdTech industry is expected to grow to A$1.7 billion by 2020 with significant focus on digital and STEM skills in education Federal and State governments.
Prodigy Learning expects entry to the Australian market to provide significant revenue growth within the next two years, with plans to service the wider Asia Pacific region from Sydney offering further growth opportunities.
Andrew Flood, Prodigy Learning CEO, explained the scale of the opportunity; “Digital and STEM skills are critical to the Australian economy, the jobs of today and the future. According to Deloitte & ACS, it is expected that by 2020 there will be 100,000 new jobs created within the ICT workforce in Australia. Yet according to PWC, only 16% of Australian high school graduates pursue degrees in STEM disciplines.”
He continued; “We recognise these skills gaps place huge emphasis on nurturing future students and individuals needed to meet the demands of employers. In partnership with Microsoft, we will provide digital skills certifications such as Microsoft Office Specialist and Microsoft Technology Associate along with supporting learning solutions and educator professional development to help prepare students to participate in the ‘ideas economy’ and become the innovators of tomorrow.”
Commenting on the partnership, Director: Education Sector, Microsoft Australia, George Stavrakakis said; “Microsoft Australia is committed to helping build Australia’s future ready workforce with the skills and capabilities for the digital economy. Digital Skills and STEM in education are critical to the students of today and tomorrow. In Prodigy Learning we now have an international experienced Microsoft skills and certifications partner to support our strategy. We are delighted they have chosen to invest in Australia and look forward to achieving great things together.”
Commenting on Prodigy Learning’s announcement, Julie Sinnamon, Enterprise Ireland CEO said “In Ireland and on the ground internationally, Enterprise Ireland is supporting innovative companies like Prodigy Learning to scale and expand internationally and achieve its global ambitions. Expanding the Irish export footprint in markets beyond the UK is a key priority, in the context of the UK exit from the European Union and the Asia Pac region delivered double-digit growth for Enterprise Ireland clients in 2016 with an impressive 16% year on year gain, making it the second fastest growing region for Enterprise Ireland backed companies in 2016.”
Learning’s digital skills certifications and learning solutions deliver
job-ready skills, improving employability for students and productivity
for employees. The Company works with education and training providers
to create unique pathways of learning leading to industry
certifications and local academic standards across the technology
spectrum (from entry-level Digital Skills to Computer Science).
Having built up a significant presence in the Irish market since incorporation in 2000, the company successfully expanded into the UK in 2008, with both geographies now core components of the business. It was recently announced as Certiport EMEA Partner of the Year for 2017.
Its customer base includes top tier academic, commercial and public-sector institutions. The Prodigy team work closely with these customers to meet their digital learning requirements. Prodigy’s customers range from secondary schools to prestigious universities such as the London School of Economics and the University of St. Andrews, government departments including the NHS in the UK and SOLAS in Ireland and corporate bodies including large professional bodies such as the ACCA: Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.
Prodigy has recently recruited a number of employees between Dublin and London and has further plans to continue growing the team to support its international expansion.
Image: Pictured as Prodigy Learning announced their Australian office (L-R): Julie Sinnamon (CEO, Enterprise Ireland), Andrew Flood (CEO, Prodigy Learning), President Michael D. Higgins (President of Ireland), Sabina Higgins, George Stavrakakis (Director: Education Sector, Microsoft Australia).