SmartProf is an online marketplace that aims to help families and students get the most out of tutoring.
SmartProf, a Moroccan edtech startup, has received USD 110,000 in pre-seed investment from UM6P Ventures, Plug and Play and a number of investment angels. The company raised USD 50,000 earlier in the year. A number of Moroccan institutions are backing SmartProf, including l’École Centrale Casablanca and UM6P startup campus, Startgate.
Founded in 2021 by Mustapha Faiz, Hamza Faiz and Ali Faouzi, the startup offers an on-demand private tutoring platform that provides live one-on-one or group tutoring through interactive, online sessions.
SmartProf: Addressing the competitive nature of school admissions
The startup aims to address a growing concern among parents: That competition to join leading schools, both private and public, is becoming increasingly challenging. As a result, “shadow education”, or private tutoring is proving ever more popular. Companies across North Africa, according to SmartProf, are seeking to capitalize on this concern by offering digital solutions that aim to improve the experience of families and students seeking additional help.
SmartProf aims to become a one-stop-shop edtech platform offering private tutoring services in North and West Africa. According to the founders, the private tutoring market across this part of Africa is worth billions of dollars.
A failing private education system
“We launched Smartprof after noticing that the private educational system was failing in Morocco. We were convinced that every student needs some kind of private assistance in order to overcome the challenges faced at schools. The private tutoring market is very fragmented; finding a tutor is a nightmare. Additionally, there’s no visibility on pricing, so there was a real need for a tech product that creates a great tutoring experience,” said Faiz.
“One of the major challenges of our company is the complex and poor payment infrastructure in Morocco. But the market opportunity for us remains huge, that’s why we try to adapt as much as possible to a very rigid banking system,” he added.
Expansion and the rise of edtech
Using the new funding, Smartprof intends to extend its footprint in Morocco and West Africa, and hire further developers to improve the product’s quality.
Earlier this year UAE-based firm nexopay Technologies raised USD 9.4 million in seed money for its app Zenda. Zenda allows families to pay school fees with pay-now and pay-later payment schemes.