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Simplilearn appoints Gerald Jaideep as its COO

Bangalore-based Simplilearn Solutions Pvt Ltd, the company behind Simplilearn.com, an online education and training destination for professional certification courses, has appointed Gerald Jaideep as its chief operating officer (COO). He was previously associated with the company as a consultant since September last year.

Commenting on the appointment, Krishna Kumar, founder and CEO of Simplilearn, said, "Jaideep has been an immense support to the team at Simplilearn. As we look to move into the next orbit, his experience will play a crucial part in shaping the strategic direction of the company."

Jaideep has over 17 years of work experience and prior to Simplilearn, he had co-founded Colorshots Consulting Pvt Ltd, a wellness and business consulting firm. Before that, he was heading the India operations of Element K (acquired by Skillsoft). He had earlier also worked at companies like Erehwon Innovation Consulting Pvt Ltd, NIIT Ltd, Sify Ltd, Mentorware, Ducont Fz Llc, and Logica Synectics (P) Ltd.

The startup was founded in 2009 by Kumar, a BE in electronics and communication from the National Institute of Technology, Karnataka. Prior to this venture, Kumar had worked with Infosys and TechUnified. Simplilearn is an online learning destination for young working professionals, who are looking at career enhancement through certification courses across industry verticals.

With study centres across the globe, Simplilearn offers over 300 certification courses in project management, Big Data and analytics, virtualisation and cloud, IT service management, Microsoft certification, quality management, and financial management, among others. According to the company, it has trained over 200,000 professionals across 100+ countries till date.

It is now planning to train 5 million participants in the next five years across the world, and is targeting break-even in the current financial year (FY2014-15). In terms of revenue, the US contributes around 50 per cent, while India is about 20 per cent. Kumar, however, declined to share the revenue figures.

In September this year, the company had appointed Prashant Radhakrishnan as its chief sales officer. Before that, it had roped in Gagan Singla, former VP-digital marketing at Quikr as its chief marketing officer (CMO) in May 2014. During the same time, the company also made its foray into Singapore, as part of its expansions plans in Southeast Asia.

Last September, Simplilearn had secured $10 million in a Series B round of funding from Helion Venture Partners and existing investor Kalaari Capital. Previously, it had bagged $3 million in Series A funding from Kalaari Capital (erstwhile IndoUS Venture Partners) in August 2012.

Other players in the online education verticals include Info Edge-backed Meritnation.com, Pearson Plc-backed Zaya Lbas, and angel-backed Flipclass.com.

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