Singapore – March 22, 2022 —
Since its establishment in 2014, the editing startup PaperTrue has maintained a consistent upward trajectory. What began as an editing service for students in the UK now covers editing and proofreading needs across many fields.
This was the result of careful planning by Rishi Raj and Manish Keswani, the co-founders of the company. They took measured steps toward broadening their service base to accommodate more and more target groups gradually.
Today, PaperTrue offers English editing services to the four groups who need it most:
- ESL students and STEM researchers need the full range of services, from language correction to formatting, citations, and plagiarism checks.
- Self-published authors across many genres require editors to polish and refine their manuscript.
- Companies require business proofreading to ensure high-quality communications, reports, and other documents.
- Job applicants and other working professionals need expert help to maintain quality in all their documents.
It all began when Rishi Raj, an IIT Bombay graduate, realized that STEM students are often prone to grammar mistakes. While writing in English, their essays, dissertations, and other documents tend to contain language and formatting errors, which undermines their hard work.
As a solution to this, Rishi decided to establish an editing and proofreading service that could help students refine their documents. In 2014, he collaborated with Neha Vaidya, Meghana Dharap, and Manish Keswani to establish the company.
At first, the company targeted only the editing needs of students in the UK. Soon, plagiarism and citation checks were added to the existing range of editing services. This helped consolidate its service base to include all English improvement services that students need.
The company continued to bring in steady profits, but it was clear that further growth would come from authors and businesses.
Over the years, they grew their services to encompass legal documents, business reports, novels, and self-help books. In 2019, the company began to establish tie-ups with different institutions. It focused on maintaining long-term clients such as businesses, universities, and academic journals.
When the pandemic hit at such a crucial point, the leadership reacted swiftly.
The company switched to the freelance model in 2021, which gave freelance editors around the world an opportunity to work with PaperTrue. However, the company retained a team of in-house editors to ensure control and quality.
As of 2022, Meghana has been working on streamlining the training process for new hires. She’s developing an online training module that makes it easier to orient new recruits across different time zones. This will also allow the managing editors to review the freelancers’ work at multiple stages in the training process.
The freelance model has introduced flexibility in PaperTrue’s work culture, which benefits both its editors and its clients.
Automated English editing services: a growing market
According to a recent report by Market Research Store, editing services are a fast-growing market. Aside from the established hotspots such as the US and UK, countries with ESL speakers will play a big role in this growth.
This data puts the global editing service industry at an estimated $4.6 billion by 2026 with a robust CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 6.4%. This is good news for those looking to invest in the English editing and proofreading services.
“At the moment,” says Rishi, “the market is quite fragmented with many small players. Our plan is to consolidate it and capture 0.5% by 2029.”
With its wide client base and high potential for attracting investors, PaperTrue has set its targets high, and its hopes higher. But the journey here speaks for the founders’ business acumen, which led them to make the right decisions at the right time.
Progressing to an automated editing service
The startup has maintained a positive EBITDA every year since its incorporation. It has maintained a steady growth, consistently delivering an ROAS (Return on Ad Spent) of more than 2.5. With plans of automation in development, there is little that can hinder this success.
Automation heavily features in PaperTrue’s plans for the future. The company is currently developing an automated language processing tool that provides AI based language corrections instantly. The tool will also check for plagiarism and generate citations.
Soon, PaperTrue’s customers will be able to choose between an AI editing tool and a human editor. This will help the company widen its client base even further.
On its existing front, PaperTrue aims to upscale its services to the two biggest target groups. The company will soon introduce subject matter editing for students and end-to-end services for self-published writers.
Name: Tanvi Palan
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