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Teacher Wars: Unacademy Seeks Police Protection For Teachers After Kota-Based Allen’s Stern Warning

Teacher Wars: Unacademy Seeks Police Protection For Teachers After Kota-Based Allen’s Stern Warning

Allen Career Institute’s cofounder director Brajesh Maheshwari has said the institute will take action against teachers who left the company, including blacklisting them from working with Alle

After Maheshwari’s video went viral on social media, Unacademy has arranged police protection to some of the former Allen teachers that it has hired

Some of the top educators at Allen Career Institute have already joined Unacademy, which could have triggered the message from Maheshwari

Unacademy is said to be in the process of getting police protection for some of its teachers in Kota after Allen Career Institute’s cofounder director Brajesh Maheshwari warned teachers against moving to the offline coaching centres set up by edtech players. Unacademy had recently roped in several teachers who had been instrumental in Allen’s growth in the past.

In a video statement, Maheshwari has claimed that Allen will take action against teachers who leave the company to move to edtech platforms, including blacklisting them from working with Allen or its partners again.

Maheshwari stated that the institute will also look to retaliate against any platform looking to poach teachers. He accused teachers of being greedy and said that Allen has over 11,000 employees and that the departure of one or two teachers will not impact the company.

Incidentally, Allen founder-director Rajesh Maheshwari has proclaimed himself to be a ‘Don of the coaching industry’ in the past. Rajesh Maheshwari is the oldest of four brothers and had founded the institute in 1988.

Police Protection For Unacademy’s New Teachers

Sources privy to the developments in Kota told Inc42 that after Maheshwari’s video went viral on social media, Unacademy is looking to arrange police protection to some of the former Allen teachers that it has hired.

Notably, Ashish Arora, who had cofounded Allen Career Institute’s Jaipur centre and under whose leadership Allen reported peak enrollments, joined Unacademy in February this year. As per sources, he has already been entrusted by Munjal to oversee the operations at Unacademy’s centre of excellence (R&D centre).

Sources further added that Unacademy is pushing in a major way to increase its presence in the offline education space, beginning with Kota, but with plans to target Jaipur, Lucknow and other student hubs.

“Munjal has told his team to hire the best of educators in each one of these centres which has happened in Kota. Some of the top educators at Allen Career Institute have already joined Unacademy, which could have triggered the Allen Career Institute’s Brajesh Maheshwari to release a video. The compensations being offered are huge compared to what these teachers were already getting,” a source close to the development told us.

Inc42 has sent queries to Allen Career Institute and Unacademy. The story will be updated as and when they respond.

The war over teachers is the latest chapter in the turbulent edtech journey so far this year. Teachers in the test prep space are well known as user acquisition vehicles given that new students often use recommendations from past batches to choose teachers. And the right teacher can attract waves of students every year to the associated institute.

One only needs to look at examples of Alakh Pandey, the founder of newly-minted unicorn PW, Unacademy’s Roman Saini or even BYJU’S cofounder Byju Raveendran who built unicorns on the back of their student following.

Teacher Wars Amid Edtech’s Offline Foray

Given the significance of Kota as an IIT coaching hub, though, many edtech giants have established a presence in this city. Unacademy, for instance, launched its first offline coaching centre in Kota last month.

Similarly, BYJU’S acquired coaching giant Aakash, which has a significant presence in Kota as well. Last year, reports indicated that edtech giants were poaching business and teachers from other offline coaching institutes as online learning continued to hold sway. However, in 2022, schools are reopening and edtech players have moved to a hybrid model with a mix of physical and virtual lessons.

Besides Aakash, BYJU’S is also venturing into other offline classes with BYJU’S Tuition Centre (BTC), which is its first real foray into blended or hybrid learning. The edtech behemoth plans to invest up to $200 Mn to build this vertical and says it will hire 10,000 employees to support 1 Mn students over the next two years.

In the case of Unacademy, the startup plans to launch centres in Jaipur, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Patna, Pune and Delhi-NCR to enrol upto 15K learners across NEET-UG, IIT-JEE and Foundation (9-12) categories. Currently, the edtech unicorn has over 50K registered educators teaching 62 Mn+ online and offline learners in 14+ languages across 5,000 cities.