By establishing its first regional team in Abu Dhabi, Cuemath, a worldwide maths learning platform with Indian roots, has bolstered its presence in the United Arab Emirates and across the region. The newly hired team will seek to serve customers, develop local alliances, and open doors to important MENA markets. Education UAE was at GESS to speak to Divi Ramola, Head of APAC and EMEA, Cuemath, to find out more about the company’s global success and expansion.
We first asked Divi about the general philosophy of Cuemath and how it has responded to market demands. “We talk to a lot of parents, really trying to understand their needs for maths education for their children, and what we hear constantly is around the conceptual side,” Divi begins. “Maths is a subject that many children shy away from or have anxiety around, and our goal is to address that and provide something that they can feel joy with, which goes a long way to building their self-confidence.
“If you talk to adults and ask them about their own maths journeys, many of them will tell you that they can’t do maths because of the way that it was taught. This was more by rote with a lot of memorising. Our approach, though, is much more about using real-world examples and focusing on the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’ of maths. And we find that children learn very well once they associate a concept with a real-world example and how it has relevance in their lives.”
Cuemath’s growth underscores the high demand for learning maths among students in the K-12 segment
Cuemath has around 200,000 students across 80 countries, with a lot of growth happening organically. Now, though, it is starting to be more strategic in its approach, which is why it is seeking partnerships in the UAE. “The UAE is very important to us – it’s sort of doorway to all of the Middle East and the MENA region. This is because a lot of countries look to the UAE as a role model for the focus they have had on education and the innovative practices that they have,” Divi says. “It is also a very diverse market. You have people from all over the world following very different curricula, so it’s very interesting for us to be here and to be able to test the market with the American, British, Australian, IB, and Indian schools, and seek out partnership opportunities.”
Cuemath has around 200,000 students across 80 countries, with a lot of growth happening organically
“Everything we do we measure and track so that the individual objectives of the children are being met,” Divi says. “Our technology platform, LEAP, is at the heart of this, and the way that we have organised our lessons is through the LPAR (Learning, Practice, Assessment, Revision) methodology, dictating that every learning module has goals.
“What’s unique about the platform is it can be optimised for each individual school. For example, there could be a student who is very quick on the uptake in terms of the concept, being taught it just once to be able to retain it. However, they then need a lot of practice to reach mastery, and that’s what we focus on. We don’t want to just complete a section and be done with it. We want to show that there is mastery of the concept, which is where the LPAR comes in.
“Everything we do we measure and track so that the individual objectives of the children are being met”
“There might be another child that takes a lot more time to grasp the concept, so the teacher will try to teach them in different ways by using visual stimulation and all of the different tools we have at our disposal.
“It has to be an authentic experience too, so the child cannot be in a contrived environment where someone is teaching to them or talking to them – it’s very collaborative and once they feel that they can learn and they can solve the problem by themselves, with a little bit of guidance, success and growing self-confidence quickly follow.”
Investing in the Future of the Next Generation
In June 2022, the company announced raising $57 million in a fresh round of fundraising, led by Alpha Wave, at a valuation of $407 million. In the last two years, Cuemath has expanded to over 80 countries and aims to expand to 100 countries by FY2023, strengthening its presence in North America, APAC, the UK, Europe, Middle East, and capturing markets in Africa and South America.
“This last round of fundraising is very significant, particularly given the economic environment. We see this as confidence in our business model and our very customer-centric, empathetic approach to learning, with a strong focus on learning outcomes.
“It has to be an authentic experience too, so the child cannot be in a contrived environment”
“We are utilising the funding in several ways, such as putting a team into Abu Dhabi – MENA is a major focus for us. We’re also setting up a Learning Lab in Boston, which is the heart of higher education in the western world, and we’ll be focusing on learning efficacy and how we can influence that. But whatever we do, the focus is always on the child,” Divi concludes.