Lectera, a leading international education platform, marks a year anniversary with customer growth and plans to conquer African markets with its fast education, fast results model.

Launched in the summer of 2020, Lectera claims to have 180,000 users from across 50 countries. According to the CEO Mila Semeshkina, Lectera gained more than 50,000 students a month after its global launch. Its first annual turnover also exceeds $5 million.

The online learning platform offers courses in five different languages, namely English, Spanish, German, Russian and Hindi. Lectera said Latin America, Russian-speaking countries, India and African countries are its strong markets.

Lectera CEO Mila Semeshkina recently talked with Business Insider Africa about her experience as a founder a fast-growing startup. Below are the most important takeaways.

Semeshkina's path to founding Lectera was quite personal. She had just finished her undergraduate degree at Moscow State University and applied for a postgraduate course. During her student years, she was often short of money. Working as a marketing specialist during the day and writing her dissertation at night, she realised that the world was changing so rapidly that her unfinished paper was becoming less and less relevant.

She knew at that point that if she wanted to excel in her career and grow as a person, she needed tools that allowed her to learn faster and more effectively by only absorbing the most relevant information. That's when Semeshkina came up with the idea of creating this tool for herself — Lectera was born out of that.

Lectera uses a unique methodology called Fast Education. With a focus on real-world application and fast results, this method makes sure that information is as digestible as possible — both with the help of video tutorials and some additional materials available within the course.

Semeshkina stepped away from traditional online learning methods in favour of a more modern approach. With this new method, stop-lessons and home assignments will be avoided, while the number of mentors is kept to a minimum.

A unique feature that makes Lectera different from other platforms is its ability to offer courses in five different languages, including English, Spanish, German, Russian, and Hindi. 30% of students use the platform to practice foreign language skills and improve their vocabulary while taking the course.

Within the first year of being on the market, Lectera managed to acquire a client base of 180,000 from 50 different nations around the globe. Russian speaking countries, Latin America, India, and African countries are particularly strong markets for the platform.

"The two main criteria that determine the popularity of our courses are the country’s level of job market competition and its preference for practical skills over the traditional university degrees", Semeshkina explains.

Fast education is becoming increasingly popular. People don't want to spend years — or even months — learning something they wish to learn. Instead, they prefer practice-oriented training that allows them to apply their skills immediately. Moreover, they are no longer willing to change their daily routines to pursue education, but are willing to devote some of their free time to it whenever they feel like it.

Among the most in-demand subjects are sales, digital marketing, and soft skills, as students who study these areas can develop skills that will benefit their careers in the future.

The platform now offers almost 200 courses, all of which are available in five different languages. The company hopes to double the number to about 500 courses next year. In the worst-case scenario, Lectera aims to acquire 500,000 customers by next year, too. But as an ambitious goal, they hope to reach one million users by the end of 2022.