06 December, Mumbai
Tata Trusts promoted by the Tata Group signed a strategic five-year partnership on Sunday with the Khan Academy as the lead founding partner to leverage technology for providing free and quality education for anyone based anywhere in India.
The collaboration will adapt and build on Khan Academy’s existing resources and tools to serve the specific needs of the Indian learner.
Without revealing details of the investment, Ratan Tata, chairman Tata Trusts, told reporters here that the Tata Group has been contributing to conventional education for 150 years and chose to associate with the Khan Academy as it is providing free education accessible to anyone and anywhere in India.
“Today, people demand self-respect, access to knowledge and have an urge to enhance their livelihoods and Tata Trusts are committed to help them do so by creating a difference in their lives,” Tata said.
“At the Trusts, we are positive that this collaboration will empower a generation of Indian learners through web-based personalized resources,” he added.
“We will focus on creating content in the first phase and we are building a team in India led by Sandeep Bapna. We need to catalyse the new types of learning model,” said Salman Khan, chief executive of Khan academy.
Queried on government making corporate social responsibility spending mandatory at 2 percent of profits for companies above a threshold, Tata said: “The mandated 2 percent the government has (stipulated) becomes like a tax.”
Tata Trusts are among India’s oldest, non-sectarian philanthropic organisations that work in several areas of community development. They have an annual investment of over Rs.550 crore in philanthropic work of which 80 percent is allocated to partnerships for initiatives reaching out to over four million households.
The Tata group has over 100 independent operating companies out of which 29 are publicly-listed. The listed entities had a combined market capitalisation of about $134 billion as on March 31 this year. It has a presence in over 100 countries.