Ronnie Screwvala, the founder and previous CEO of UTV Group, is setting up an INR100 crore education fund to provide scholarships for professionals seeking to enhance their skills through online courses. He has already pledged INR10 crore as initial corpus, and is planning to raise it to INR100 crore in the next 12 months from high net worth individuals and companies. He also runs online education startup Upgrad, but clarified that scholarships will be given to working professionals looking to study or take up any course of their choice from any online platform and not restricted to Upgrad. Explaining his investment, Ronnie said that “The inspiration for the scholarship fund was really our experience over the last two years with Upgrad and understanding that the need to push the credibility of online learning as a viable option is still not there”.
Upgrad, founded by Ronnie Screwvala, Mayank Kumar, Ravijot Chugh and Prabhav Phalgun in 2015, offers online courses in entrepreneurship, digital marketing, data analytics and product management for working professionals. It now runs nine programmes on data and digital, and has over 6,000 students, primarily working professionals, from across the country. Upgrad is also the official education partner of the government’s StartUp India program where it offers a free four-week online course to entrepreneurs.