Byju Raveendran, the founder of top educational technology company behind the eponymous Byju's - The Learning App, on Sunday received the Manorama News Newsmaker Award for the year 2019. The award was presented by Lulu Group chairman M A Yusuffali at an online event.
Presenting the award, Yusuffali said as a Keralite he was proud of the growth Byju's has achieved by winning huge investments from big international companies.
Receiving the award, Raveendran said he was dedicating the award to COVID warriors who have helped the community survive the pandemic and teachers who worked hard to take forward the process of education uninterrupted.
Though Kerala has improved its image as an investment-friendly state, the tendency to make controversies out of anything is damaging its stature, Yusuffali said.
"The tendency to insult entrepreneurs has to be changed. Entrepreneurs from the state should invest in Kerala without the fear of controversies," he said.
Yusufali said the Lulu Group has been able to launch 24 new hypermarkets across the world this year, despite the COVID crisis. Around 1,800 Keralites, who lost their jobs in the Gulf amid the pandemic, were given jobs in these centres.
Raveendran said that society should change its attitude, so that the ventures do not get discouraged despite failures.
"The world is surviving the pandemic with the help of technology. Through the Byju's App, we could give jobs to 11,000 teachers in the past six months," he said.
"We cannot make everything online. We should adopt a middle-ground by combining online and offline education," Raveendran said.
Malayala Manorama Executive Editor Jayant Mammen Mathew, KLM Axiva Finvest Executive Director Shibu Thekkumpuram, Manorama News News Director Johny Lukose and Senior Co-ordinating Editor Pramod Raman were present during the event. The award was announced in January.
Raveendran won the award after he secured the most number of votes among the candidates short-listed for the final of the Newsmaker contest. The selection was based on SMS voting by the public.
Raveendran was chosen for the award for his contribution in turning his Bengaluru-based online tutoring firm named Think and Learn Private Ltd into the world’s most valued EdTech company.
Apart from Raveendran, Chief Electoral Officer of Kerala Teeka Ram Meena, Ramya Haridas, MP, and actor Indrans were also short-listed for the final round of the award.