In 2019, Uttam Kumar Pandey (Founder and CEO at Bangalore-based Perceived Design) came up with the idea to establish a venture that aims to build products and services to transform brands digitally with interactive immersive technologies besides AR and VR being its prime highlights. The visionary strived to set up a brand that would work to bridge the gap between the physical world and the digital world seamlessly. With this vision, he has successfully built a content creating product which enables brands to design experiential digital engagement like AR and VR in a few clicks. This is how ‘Perceived Design‘ came into existence.
The tech enthusiast is an expert AI-driven market researcher and is adept at user experience design, product development strategy and product market fit. Before commencing with his entrepreneurial journey, Uttam has worked with all his capacity and potential for various roles. He worked with Entropik Tech as a Product Design Lead and also explored marketing & pre-sales role to better understand the audience & product market fit. Previously, he worked as a Senior Creative Associate in the media content team and was also a part of the game development and marketing team of Byju’s, serving as Art Director and Design Manager.
Uttam believes that he is inherently a problem solver and a creator. These things add joy to his life and he always had a dream to do something though which he’ll be able to leave a legacy behind. He is a technology leader who takes it to be his fundamental duty to create a better future for generations to come. He is deeply inspired by Steve Jobs and his ideologies of life.
In an exclusive interaction with Motiverge, Uttam Kumar Pandey, Founder and CEO, Perceived Design shares more insights about his venture, journey so far, motivation and future plans.
Below are the excerpts from the interview:
What is Perceived Design all about?
Perceived Design is an R&D based company which is innovating Human Computer Interaction. We have a vision to reduce the Physical and Digital Divide. We help brands to better engage with their customers using immersive technology solutions.
What factors influenced or motivated you to start this venture? What seeded the idea of a startup in EdTech sector?
COVID-19 in 2020 motivated us to start this venture in EdTech Space. In 2020, the education market saw a surge of teachers and students coming online for classes using video conferencing tools. I have worked with several edtech brands and teachers and I observed that no teachers are equipped with assets to take classes online. Teachers generally shuffle active and passive ways of pedagogy but when we talk about online classes that are taking place during this pandemic, teachers are unable to engage their students. Moreover, when it comes to higher education, teaching complex concepts becomes more difficult for teachers to communicate efficiently.
What were the first few steps during and after the launch of Perceived Design?
Finding out the problems faced by teachers and students. I conducted several surveys and took feedback. Later on, we developed design and tech solutions to bring LIVE 3D interactivity for teachers and students. Now we are collaborating with teachers and institutes to create content around the curriculum.
Have you raised funds so far?
We are completely bootstrapped at the moment.
Tell us about your motivation. What keeps you going?
Creating value and building something that has the potential to benefit the future. Making a difference in the world. Satisfaction of building something useful and betterment of humanity is the best feeling.
How has your journey been so far?
We are doing great! We have worked with top edtech brands and leading teachers in the country, helping on creating content and modules for improving student-teacher engagement. We believe that we have a huge market for the global teaching community as well and we are also getting ready to enter the global market.
How big is your team? How did you manage your team and business during COVID-19 outbreak?
We have a team of 10-20 dedicated professionals. We started our company in last months of 2019. Within a month of starting up, COVID-19 hit India in a devastating way. As it was very early on, our MVP was not ready. Initially, remote working caused a lot of inertia but my co-founder, Ravi and I kept moving ahead. We utilized this time to deep dive and research technologically viable solutions and probable go to market.
What is the USP of your brand? What makes you different from your competition?
We believe that learning is not a one way process that you receive information from a teacher. If we see broadly every learner falls into VARK Learners (Visual, Auditory, Reading & Kinesthetic learners) and research says that 85% of the students fall in VK learners (Visual and Kinesthetic). We see a number of edtech brands coming up with great Visual (Video) based learning but Kinesthetic learning is very minimal or next to zero. So we are building a platform for teachers and students that enables them to utilize 2D and 3D simulations which will not only be used for teachers but also students can interact with and understand, learn and explore at the same time.
What role do you think your brand is playing in enabling brands to better communicate with customers and transform their experiences?
We are an experience enabler for brands. We see that using our platform has helped improve class engagement by improving class participation, improvement in content retention and lesser cognitive load, among others. All in all happy learners means effective learning.
What are the business opportunities in EdTech sector, especially in the APAC region? How do you see market growth and response in the post-COVID-19 world?
According to HolonIQ, the Total Global Education Expenditure will be US $8 trillion by 2025. The Global Market size value for EdTech is expected to grow from US$89.07 billion in 2020 to US$285.23 billion in 2027, growing at a CAGR of 18.1%. Education focused AI expenditure itself is estimated to be a US $6 billion market by 2025.
The digitisation pace in education is predicted to overtake healthcare, primarily due to the advancement in this field over the last 10 years, and explosive growth in artificial intelligence especially in countries such as China, the US and India.
What is your idea of simplifying learning with interactive immersive technologies?
Introducing VARK Learning– Through our new initiative, teachers and schools will have access to pedagogy for math and science. Students will interact and learn from simulations, videos and slides to assignments, teachers can now use our content to conduct their classes & help their students understand better and learn better.
Where do you see Perceived Design in the coming 3 to 5 years?
We see ourselves as leaders of VARK based pedagogical learning styles using interactive & immersive tech. We see that education will not be restricted to only Video based learning but experience and interactive way of learning.
What are your messages for budding entrepreneurs/young generation?
The best leaders and entrepreneurs follow their intrinsic rather than extrinsic motivations. The value of finding a way to align your strengths with your intrinsic motivations, is the sweet spot. Strive for that.
Hope this interview will motivate all the aspiring entrepreneurs. It is a part of our startup profiling feature story/interview series. We are on a mission to bring forward the inspirational journey of successful entrepreneurs in order to spread some motivation during these tough times.
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