Students and adults alike are always awed by Stars, Black Holes, Space etc., but they seldom get to experience these concepts in class rooms. It is because the present education system focuses only on bookish knowledge rather than a holistic experiential education. This is where Space Trek Planetarium comes into action. Started in 2013, Space Trek Planetarium is an immersive education platform for learning Science and Technology in a portable, igloo-shaped, inflated dome-like planetarium. “It is the result of nine years of research &development in the STEM Education,” says Vinod Kumar, founder, Space Trek Global.

A guided tour to the space and beyond!

“The main motive behind Space Trek Planetarium, which is based in India and abroad, is to create an environment where children will get a guided tour or journey through the space and beyond inside the dome. It is a miniature version of the planetariums found around the world,” says an elated Vinod.

Changing the way we learn

According to Vinod, Space Trek Global’s vision is to change the way of learning by providing affordable immersive learning through interactive, engaging and entertaining content to schools across the globe. “Other than Space Trek Planetarium, we also have live 3D exhibitions of planet Mars as captured by NASA’s various rovers,” he says.

Converting theory to practice

The education sector in India is mainly focused on theoretical skills and this creates a certain void when converting the theory-based skills to actualization of knowledge. Vinod cites this as the reason behind quality of workforce deteriorating in the country. “Our focus is to address this issue by teaching practical, experiential STEM Education through Robotics, Astronomy, Video Game Design and Experiential learning,” he adds.

The brains behind the venture

Space Trek Global’s founder Vinod Kumar is a serial Edupreneur. Prior to Space Trek Global, he co-founded Tech Knowledge Education, which is one of India’s Best Robotics Training Institute, having represented India in various robotics competitions, including the World Robot Olympiad for the past six, seven years. Vinod’s schoolmate Bharath Raman joined the company as its co-founder and is now heading the Indian operations successfully as its CEO.

Space Trek Global has its global headquarters in Singapore, mentored by an efficient team from SHINE ADA, comprising Azeeza Jalaludeen, Simon Lim and Dr. AR Ramesh Nambiar.

On the hunt for doers

The biggest challenge the company is facing at the moment is acquiring quality management team. “The company is fast growing and the emphasis is on “doers”. We need more “doers” in the management team, but they are not easy to find,” concedes a much concerned Vinod.

Space Trek’s competitive advantage

The founder says reliance on systems and processes has been their biggest competitive advantage. They also have an efficient R&D team comprising global thought leaders committed to the betterment of education. “We are a conglomerate of Hardware, Software, Content and Experience provider in the education sector, which is quite uncommon in this sector,” he says.

A course-correction for growth

The team is thankful for the assistance they got from the Excellerated Business School, USA’s longest running experiential program, Money & You®. The Money & You®program apparently helped both the founders to understand the basic mistakes committed by most entrepreneurs in their business, and helped in the course-correction of their process and model. “Most entrepreneurs, including us, forget the importance of systems in the business and focus on people alone for the development. It becomes a setback when key personnel leave or are absent. The Money & You®program helped us understand this, and we have fast tracked our business growth to at least three times since the program,” says Vinod.

The biggest award for an educator!

“Space Trek is all about inspiring students towards science and technology. The biggest award for an educator is to see his students get inspired by what you teach, and do great things in life,” he says and adds that they have been able to inspire a lot of students through a multitude of program streams.

Funding

The directors have invested almost Rs. 2 crores in the company. “Today, Space Trek Planetarium enjoys business relations with more than 700+ schools in South India and has catered to nearly 300,000 students, annually. Space Trek Global is currently in the process of Angel Fund Raising,” say the founder.

Looking ahead

Space Trek Planetarium, the portable dome, is just an entry level immersive learning experience for schools and students. Space Trek’s goal is to have an immersive classroom in every school in the world in the next five to 10 years. In the next five years, the company aspires to go for a public listing valued over $300 USD.

Revenue model & pricing

A planetarium show, on an average, would cost Rs.100 per student. “We expand through franchising.It resonates with our business design of providing a win-win relation to wannabe entrepreneurs to become financially independent, and also enable us to reach to millions of students across the globe,” says Vinod. Get in touch with team Space Trek at edu@spacetrek.in.

Website: Space Trek Planetarium

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