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IDLC Monthly Business Review features Bohubrihi

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IDLC Business Review published the story of Yanur Islam Piash and Galib Hassan Khan - the founders of Bohubrihi, under the Spotlight on Startup section.

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IDLC Monthly Business Review features Bohubrihi

  1. 1. 16 of 32 SPOTLIGHT ON STARTUP BOHUBRIHI In 2015, Yanur Islam Piash and Galib Hassan Khan, the future founders of Bohubrihi, enrolled into the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. They were studying Chemical Engineering and were more acquaintances than friends. Piash and Galib didn’t hang out outside class, in fact they didn’t talk about much more than their courses at university. But Piash and Galib both believed that in order to be better, one had to learn things oneself. This love for self-education became the crux upon which a beautiful friendship was formed. Paish was interested in learning software skills, while Galib was interested in programming and coding. They both started honing their skills using various online platforms like Coursera, EdX and Lynda. A couple years later, they both began apprenticeship under a research project for their department. While discussing which learning platforms to best utilize, they happened upon the realization that there were no significant websites that allowed access to such courses in Bangladesh. There were websites that allowed tuition for school and college levels, but none that allowed for corporate skill learning. There were some DVDs that allowed for such courses, but nothing of mentionable quality. To the founders of Bohubrihi, learning is not just tuition, but an experience. So, in discussing learning platforms, Piash and Galib discovered opportunity and set to work creating Bohubrihi. In the middle of 2016 they started working on the website. But it was a lengthy and difficult process that took over a year and a half. They finally launched the beta version of their website in 2018. Skills and money were both short at hand. They gathered 6-7 students from their department (all first and second year students at the time) and started working. The initial investment was only BDT 15,000, which Galib and Piash bore themselves using money they earned by offering tuition to younger students. The development period (2016-2017) was the most difficult, there were plenty of financial constraints and there were times when they wanted to quit, but they eventually pulled through. They attribute this success to the people around them, some of whom were in similar positions with their own startups. Their shared frustrations were somehow the thing that pushed them forward. The company is currently funded by two angel investors, both alumni of BUET. The company currently is not looking for any larger investments. When the website was launched in 2018, there was only one course on the site. Galib and Piash went to senior students hoping for a good reception, but the website failed to gain traction. They didn’t give up and went back to work as soon as possible, and in November of 2018, they finally launched the website with 2 more courses and a 50% discount on their courses. This campaign was a success and it reaffirmed their Galib Hassan Khan Yanur Islam Piash Founder, Bohubrihi
  2. 2. 17 of 32 conviction for the business. Since 2019, the website has grown exponentially. Bohubrihi is an eLearning platform that offers online courses and training to professionals as well as students at a university level. The courses on the platform are designed in collaboration with experts in the particular fields. The website primarily focuses on technology and business. The videos are hosted by Vimeo. Bohubrihi believes that self-learning should be an experience and thus takes a different approach to teaching. Students who take the courses have the opportunity to work on projects and/or assignments unlike tests or quizzes that other competitive platforms offer. Their work on these assignments are reviewed by mentors, which in turn allows for students to specifically understand where they are lacking. This builds a sense of community for the students, and allows for a much greater learning experience. All the revenue of the business comes from the one- time fee that students have to pay while enrolling in a course. This fee affords them full access to the course Key Info 2,000 taking using the site to learn corporate skills One-time fee platform for self-learning 13 courses on the website and all related study materials. The company previously sold DVDs on request, but no longer does so. Payments for the courses are collected through BKash and Rocket. When asked how Bohubrihi intends to remain profitable in an age of increasing internet accessibility, the founders stated that they believed they had a product that offered value and an educational experience rather than just a tutorial or course and that their product would speak for itself. Bohubrihi believes that the services they offer have not been made free yet, and that there is still opportunity for high-end customers to purchase premium services which they hope to launch in the future, once the company has a large enough customer base, and the funds to justify the endeavor. Bohubrihi is currently run by a small team of 8 people, all of whom are current students or alumni of BUET, Dhaka University or the Islamic University of Technology (IUT). They are not just colleagues, but also friends who have known each other for years, which makes for a familial environment at the office. Bohubrihi has come a long way since its inception. The website currently has 2,000 users and offers 13 courses. They are currently concentrating on adding new courses to the platform. And trying to add as much value to each course as possible. E-learning is more than just creating video tutorials, it requires extensive research and development and Bohubrihi conducts industry experts to design the syllabus for each course. Their short term goal is to increase the number of courses offered on their platform to 30 by 2022. Photo Credit: Avipsu Das Gupta
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