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Education Perfect is a Kiwi global education company that has experienced impressive growth in 2021/22. Its CEO Alex Burke shares the top five fundamentals driving that growth.

Over the past two years Education Perfect(link is external) has employed an additional 100 people across 12 countries and expanded its service offering into a further 38 countries, bringing the total to 80. In mid-2021 it completed a successful investment deal, with global firm KKR taking a majority stake in the company, to the value of more than NZ$450 million.

While many tech companies were handed a ‘blessing in disguise’ as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic which sped up the world-wide digital revolution. More people are spending time online working, learning, socialising and transacting. But it’s not the sole reason behind this company’s phenomenal growth spurt.

ExporterToday asked CEO Alex Burke (pictured above) what the secret formula is for managing global growth and maintaining momentum in an increasingly unsettled and unpredictable global economy.

According to Burke, despite the disruption and uncertainty, the fundamentals still apply. Here are his top five.


  1. Innovate – but be responsive to market with quality products and services.

Certainly the move to online schooling during the Covid-19 pandemic helped Education Perfect to ‘open up the’ conversation around the potential and possibilities of online learning and gave the company unprecedented opportunities to ‘get a foot in the door’. However, these opportunities only worked in the company’s favour because it has built its reputation on providing solutions which deliver – and demonstrate – ROI in a very short period of time.

There are more than one million students around the world using Education Perfect’s online learning platform, and 2600 schools using the company’s data product, which all helps teachers and school managers in a number of ways: to easily identify learning issues and implement early intervention strategies, to measure overall performance and benchmark results, to make budget allocation decisions and to invest in subject areas that may be lacking.

Testimonials attest to the fact that users become advocates very quickly.

“There are other conversations being had in the school setting, around teacher shortages and ensuring students are adequately equipped for the increasing digital future that lies ahead of them. Technology – certainly the tools that we are working on – can solve so many of these issues in a really potent and cost-effective way,” says Burke.

The next step is for the company to capitalise on its existing relationships to keep the conversation going, to demonstrate how it can help, in a meaningful way, to solve these current problems within the education sector.

In the coming months, Education Perfect will also launch its first B2C product – homeschooling resources for parents, a market which is expanding and which has considerable growth potential in New Zealand and Australia.


  1. Be adaptable – But don’t throw out your strategic plans.

“I’m an advocate of the 90-day plan.” says Burke. “You definitely need the long-term growth story, but 90-day planning allows you to build momentum, at the same time as it provides critical points at which you can make key decisions about changing direction, taking a pause, or pushing ahead.”

“In uncertain times, you need to be agile and adaptable but it’s also critical to stay focused on your core business objectives – why you do what you do, and what you want to achieve.”

Key to being able to remain focused is having adequate funding, he says.


  1. Company culture – empower and trust your people.

When Burke took the helm at Education Perfect, the company did not have a clearly articulated mission and values. This was something that Burke took upon himself to develop.

Not just ‘marketing or culture “mumbo jumbo”, Education Perfect’s culture is central to its success because it provides the guidelines which empower its people to make the decisions within their remit, he says. These ‘micro’ decisions have an impact on how the company performs overall.

As staff numbers grow, and different cultures and time zones expand, Burke believes, “If you’ve got the right governance and processes in place, then, in theory, the number of people shouldn’t necessarily complicate what you’re doing. But it’s something to keep monitoring and challenging.” 


  1. Be ‘socially responsible’ 

Education Perfect(link is external) has an aim of ensuring equitable access to education for all students. The company is currently working with refugees in Malaysia and Cambodia, providing its products to 1500 students through a partnership with the International Children’s Fund.

In Australia, working with the Smith Family, there are plans in place for a similar project for disadvantaged students.


  1. Build and promote your brand

“If anything, this right now is where we are not meeting our own milestones,” says Burke. “We’ve got the best products in the market, but we’re still building our reputation across wider segments of New Zealand and Australia,” he says. “When we’re competing against overseas companies, the ‘Kiwi company takes on the world’ story has typically worked in our favour, but locally there’s work to be done to increase our profile further.” 

Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


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