By @SimonCocking

Describe the company – the elevator pitch:

Alison is an e-learning provider and academy founded in Galway, Ireland in 2007 by serial entrepreneur, Mike Feerick. It empowers people to gain basic education and workplace skills through free access to online courses enabling upward social mobility for those in developing geographies and enabling further education and self-development for those in other parts of the world: An overall positive effect of empowerment through education.

How are you different?

Alison provides free access to all its courses. Our philosophy is one of empowerment through education, free online courses for all: An ethos of equality and encouragement. We are not a charity. Our business model earns revenue through advertising online and paid certification.

Why will the company/product do well?

Our product is doing well! With over 11 million learners visiting our website at and one million active learners per month and 1.5 million Alison graduates our product is succeeding and the scope is limitless. Free access to online learning is attractive globally and it is beneficial globally to all sections of all communities but overall this exemplifies a ‘Power for Good.’

Where are you based?

Based in Galway, Ireland a hub for technology and arts and culture. The company has numerous different nationalities on its staff giving it a very inclusive global perspective.

When was the company launched?

Alison launched in 2007.

What have been your biggest wins to date?

We are driven by our belief in the power of education to change people’s lives for the better and are passionate about providing an overall learning experience that meets their needs and helps them to achieve life goals. When we see the result in smiling graduates eyes – that’s our biggest win – when we see people empowering themselves through Alison.

What type of people (market segment) are you trying to attract to your product?

Our courses are of interest to people from all walks of life and all over the world. We provide more than 800 online courses free, and counting. Our market is the entire population albeit with particular segments having interest in particular courses.

What tips would you give to others looking to build their business?

Believe in yourself. Empower yourself. We believe that education, more than anything, has the power to break through boundaries and transform lives.

Tell us about your team?

Alison is made up of an international team of talented technologists, publishers, analysts, and marketers, all dedicated to our free learning mission. We enjoy our work and working with the various skillsets and personalities within the team. We have representatives from 14 countries across 6 continents worldwide!

Every member of the Alison team believes strongly in the empowering power of knowledge. Every day, we unite in doing our best to bridge the gap between those who have access to knowledge opportunity, and those who do not.

What are your long term plans for your product/company?

To continue to empower people by helping people to help themselves. Empowering people with free access to knowledge and education. Continue to deliver and expand giving access to knowledge to everyone. Making access to education synonymous with Equality.

Anything else you’d like to add/we should have asked?

Thank you – to you and to all the learners who support Alison. Through your support Alison can achieve bringing equality to education and opportunity.

How do people get in touch with you?

On the Alison website at you can submit a query. Or you can simply email [email protected]

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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