About seven years ago, I joined what was then just an idea, "Make Learning Fun."

Now, it’s a product that has impacted 6 million users. After many iterations of learning, experiments, and stellar success in the MENA region, Noon is starting our new chapter in India, aspiring for a goal of 50 million active users by 2023. And we know it isn’t impossible.

A product where students spend more than 60 mins studying with live experience brings a lot of challenges in tech. And India's tech talent plays a significant role in making it a success. Noon has its presence in India since March 2017.

Back then, what was a just tech powerhouse to start the journey in India, is now not only a trove of some good nostalgic moments but an established tech hub.

I have seen students returning after years of completing their graduation thanking Noon for its success and how it played a significant role in their professional life. Though it is very satisfying in itself, it always inspires me to be a part of their learning curve. It takes a lot to play a role in enhancing someone’s quality of life and what better can it be, if you are building something that gives them a great learning experience.

The Crux

We live in an era of instant gratification where everything seems available immediately via smartphone or the internet. And of-course this leads to immediate boredom, because many things we buy, stop appealing to us rather too soon. Noon Academy is tackling this biggest problem in a student’s life - The boredom. How? By unlocking a social learning experience.

On the surface, it may appear that we are just another Edtech company, promising to cover the curriculums by live/recorded sessions, doubts solving, and content that can motivate the students.

But the reality is beyond this. We at Noon are crafting highly engaging learning experiences by building communities around topics and activities. E.g., interactive live sessions, breakout rooms for peer learning, peer to peer competition, and prompt teacher/community feedback. This helps to create  a much more tangible outcome.

Students collaborate in teams and compete with other team members and groups. This creates a well poised quality among them, a profound sense of belonging, triggers confidence, makes them individually competent and learns to handle peer pressure with other team members. This is what drives us. Not sheer academic excellence, but we play a role in making them individually competent.

Why Go This Way?

In my observation, the Internet inverts the learning process. While in school, we start with the basics and expand towards curiosity, in online, we begin with interest and extend towards the basics.

Today access to information is cheap and global. We can learn from anybody anywhere, which shifts the bottleneck of learning towards motivation. And social/peer interaction plays a strong motivating force in our learning experience. The student learns from best teachers in live interactive sessions, validates their learning in breakout rooms with their peers, and clarifies their doubts in the community forum.

Like I mentioned, this experience builds a sense of belongingness and peer pressure, which even impacts an individual’s behaviour.

Let me give you a small example - You see we love to talk about cricket in our circle because all my friends and teammates from school to college and society are talking about it, and naturally, you long to be part of the group. Isn't it so?

Now coming to the teachers, we are going beyond borders. The accessibility will help students pick and learn from the best teacher always. And this makes the teachers the need to inspire, entertain, and establish emotional connections with the students. Essentially, social learning is about building a community to enhance the learning experience. That’s where we are headed.

The People of Noon.

Honestly, It is a quite similar story like any other successful startup.

A small team set out with a goal, started from a cafe ( we call it Noon's garage) and launched the first version in Nov 2013. Well, this attracted better and better ones to join the garage. And we start our journey.

Today, we have offices in three countries - Tech in India, Business & leadership in Saudi Arabia, Egypt and India. Well, we have also begun another office in London to attract the best talent for Product, UX, and Data Science. Now you see we are quite diverse in our approach.

India has always been a tech powerhouse for Noon and will continue to be. We will continue to add new talents and parallely groom our homegrown talent.

I am very thankful to our leadership team and of-course to each and everyone at Noon, those who made their contributions and left, those who continue to contribute and those who are yet to make their mark.

Let’s make the difference. #LetsLearnTogether.


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