The folks at Clutch seem to have built a high quality brick and mortar business for the FIU student community and are providing tutoring services to students. While they have had some initial success, they want to scale to much larger proportions and move into pre-recorded video education online. I am a little skeptical about moving to that model when so many players in the online education space exist and it seems like they have a profitable model with in-person.
I would almost like to see a franchise model with small brick and mortar presence at major universities connected to a web presence with live support along with recorded tutorials. That can be problematic though for maintaining quality in each location and it sounded like from the pitch Q&A that they have some difficulty acquiring new tutors and that is part of the motivation for the new model, but it might be a good model to go after dynamic locals from the school that could provide services in each location. There are also a lot of opportunities in this model for add-on services and marketing to students and I could imagine corporations wanting access to these motivated students willing to spend extra for tutoring.
All of that said, their pitch was concise and to the point and they clearly were ready to discuss the model and hopefully they will be able to scale this across the country. You can’t dismiss someone that has built a successful model while in school and that believes in their product. I was impressed with their skills and knowledge and hopefully their client students will continue to be as well.
Brad Nickel is an expert in technology product development, marketing, and strategy and has helped numerous startups and larger firms launch exciting and innovative apps. His firm Captiva Communications helps companies create powerful applications, launch beautiful web sites, set strategy and manages their marketing. He lives in Miami, FL with his wife Karin and children Amanda and Zachary.