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Fastest Growing Private Companies: Interactive Education Concepts

Interactive Education specializes in bringing humor to required classes, such as a driver’s education course ordered by a traffic court. The company started in the classroom, but in recent years its move to online classes has opened up growth opportunities; it reported revenue of $7.4 million last year. Encino Gary Alexander TITLE: Chief Executive # ON FASTEST GROWING LIST: 23 Three-Year Growth Rate: 90% Most Popular Product: Our driver safety courses represent a big portion of the current revenue. In California we are best known for our Improv Comedy Traffic School that we now offer online. We pioneered this concept 25 years ago and haven’t looked back. With that said, we are actively working in shifting this concentration to offer other compliance courses to individuals and industry. Role of Humor: Let’s face it, safety training is not the most exciting topic in the world. So anytime you can make it more enjoyable and/or have higher student engagement, you got a win-win combo. This concept was validated for us by four independent state studies (three in Florida and one in New York) showing that our courses are effective in reducing traffic crashes. You can’t ask for better validation.   Customers: We have four main buckets of why customers come to us: 1.) Traffic tickets – A person is ordered by the court and is referred to an approved provider to take a class. Depending on the state, the choices vary from few hundred in California to us being the only approved provider in Kentucky. 2.) Insurance Discounts – An insurance carrier offers a discount incentive for taking an approved course. In many states, these discounts are mandated by state rules and vary from 5 to 15 percent.  In California any driver over the age of 55 can qualify for a discount with their current carrier once they complete a course. 3.) Teen Driver’s Ed – Most states require that all new drivers complete a Driver’s Ed course prior to getting their learner’s permit. 4.) Employee training – We offer a comprehensive catalog of safety training products ranging from driving to OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration) compliance and human resources skills. In this case, the employer contracts with us to provide needed training. We recently released a course with Pamela Anderson on making safer choices titled “Don’t Be a Derk.” Just like our traffic school that made us famous, we utilize humor and levity to deliver an important message. Organizations such as Uber, US Army and Navy are utilizing our programs both online and in the classroom.  Price: Typically, $20 to $50 per student. Different from Competitors: There is only one Improv. We were always pioneers in delivering effective humorous training and we feel we still own this space.  Economic/Social Trends: One thing I am really worried about are driverless cars. That will definitely have an impact on our current business. I just published an article on this on LinkedIn. Biggest Challenge: Not enough hours in a day. Other than that, we are in a highly regulated industry so every new opportunity has to go through a rigorous licensing process. Next Big Opportunity: This and next year we are focused on developing a more comprehensive catalog of offerings for OSHA compliance and human resources training. Fun on the Job: I am a serial entrepreneur, so seeing a company grow, solving problems and identifying new opportunities gets me out of the bed every morning. It’s a very creative process. It also can be very frustrating but I love every minute of it. Advice: I always like to start with the very obvious – you got to show up. It amazes me how many people miss that. To paraphrase the old saying, you got to be in the right place at right time, so you got to go places. Show up and listen. Every problem presents an opportunity. No problems, no business.

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