Edallianz is an Educational business found by Eric Lim, in Singapore, providing learning platforms for students.
What’s your story?
I spent 12 years in a technology business before I started two education companies in Singapore. One company deals with children’s fitness and the other organises events to equip parents with the right wisdom to become better parents. At that time I had no clue about education business. In my mind, I only knew education can help one to become happier or one to get out a mess.
We also successfully brought in an unknown children’s enrichment company and cultivated it into a market leader in its industry. After 13 years in dealing with parents and operating a children learning company, it gave me a holistic understanding about those problems that both the learning providers and parents face in their journey.
Last year, I decided to embark on a new journey and Edallianz was birthed with the idea of combining Star Alliance and Trip Advisor concept for the learning industry. Our goal is to set ourselves as an advisory platform company in the learning industry by providing and connecting the right program to the right learner. We aspire to organise and bring knowledge directly to the individual.
What excites you most about your industry?
Today, Edallianz has developed multiple products with one already launched and the rest currently undergoing testing. We have hundreds of schools and thousands of members who have on-boarded our platform. This is an exciting industry, it is a billion dollar industry in Asia.
We are working to add value to both the learning companies and parents or learners. It is not only the huge market potential that excites us but rather the opportunity to impact both the learning providers and families to improve their lives through learning. We want to ignite learning in Asia through optimising the matchmaking process with technology.
What’s your connection to Asia?
I was born and grew up in Singapore. I am Asian.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Definitely Singapore despite its size. Efficiency, infrastructure, government stability, Singapore branding, transparency and Asia connections are all important criteria for me. Once we are operationally ready, it is easy to expand to the rest of Asia.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
When a door closes, there will definitely be another door opening.
Who inspires you?
David Low, Chairman and CEO of Futuristic Store Fixtures, a Temasek invested company and overall winner of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2016 Singapore. Today, Futuristic has outfitted more than 7,000 retail stores worldwide including those belonging to Victoria’s Secret, Guess and Bath & Body Works.
A secondary school dropout, his perseverance, his dedication to learn on his own, his hungriness and fighting spirit and go against all odds to achieve his success is very inspiring. He told me once that the learning market in Asia is extremely huge and encouraged me to take on the task to create a mission in this market. He is currently our shareholder and advisor.
Another person who has inspired me a lot is my Dad who once told me when I was only in primary 6 “You will never be outstanding if you stay as an employee forever.” This planted a seed in me from a young age that one day I will be a businessman.
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
Things that will happen twice. Once in our mind and once in reality. Nothing is impossible, there are only things that you don’t dare to think of.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I believe I would still be doing business but I would be more daring more willing to volunteer myself for things that others don’t want to do. I would also start my business younger.
How do you unwind?
Listen to Jazz, watch a movie or a walk in the park.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Phuket. It has a beautiful sea, mountains and shopping. A place that can be both quiet and full of activities.
Everyone in business should read this book:
The Starbucks Experience, 5 Principles for Turning Ordinary into Extraordinary by Joseph A. Michelli
Shameless plug for your business:
Edallianz is the Star Alliance and Trip Advisor of the learning industry. Our goal is to organise knowledge and make it accessible and connected to everyone. We are also working towards using Edallianz as a platform to enable less privileged learners to access quality programs.
This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews
Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started,
built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.