Case | HBS Case Collection | November 2015 (Revised May 2016)

Aspiring Minds

by Karim R. Lakhani, Marco Iansiti and Christine Snively

Abstract

By 2015, India-based employment assessment and certification provider Aspiring Minds had helped facilitate over 300,000 job matches through its assessment tools. Aspiring Minds' flagship product, the Aspiring Minds Computer Adaptive Test (AMCAT), used machine learning algorithms to evaluate the abilities of job seekers and provide feedback by measuring not only skills and knowledge, but also personality and behavior traits. Since its founding in 2007, the company developed several new assessment products, including SVAR, a spoken-English evaluation, Automata, a programming skills evaluator, a customer service test, and TESLA, a suite of products that assessed and provided certification for vocational skills. The company had recently expanded into parts of Africa, the Middle East, the Philippines, the U.S., and most recently, China. Aspiring Minds had seen success as a business-to-business (B2B) entity, creating and selling technology products geared towards industry verticals. By 2015 the business-to-consumer (B2C) side of the business in India had been quite successful as well, generating revenues equal to that of the B2B side. As Aspiring Minds worked to establish a presence in China, co-founders Himanshu and Varun Aggarwal considered whether a B2B or B2C approach would best help the company achieve scale.

Keywords: Technology; Strategy; Higher Education; Technological Innovation; Employment; Technology Industry; India; China;

Citation:

Lakhani, Karim R., Marco Iansiti, and Christine Snively. "Aspiring Minds." Harvard Business School Case 616-013, November 2015. (Revised May 2016.)