Re-engaging Learners


Kibo - Inclusive Education for Blind

Enabling visually-impaired students to Listen, Translate, Digitize & Audio'tize™ any kind of printed, handwritten & digital content across 60+ languages.

Team Lead

Akshita Sachdeva

Solution Pitch

The Problem

There are 6.7M visually-impaired students worldwide (age 5-18 years) that lack equal education as they cannot access printed, handwritten, and scanned-digital documents independently. While they are reliant on Braille or audiobooks, less than 1% of content is available in Braille and it takes about 30 days to audio-record a 300-page book. Additionally, late-blind students often don’t learn Braille.

The Solution

Kibo is an end-to-end solution to empower blind and visually-impaired students towards inclusive education by enabling them to Listen, Translate, Digitize & Audio'tize™ printed, handwritten and even scanned, digital documents across 60 global languages.

Kibo comprises three products to address the reading learning challenges for visually-impaired students:

1. Kibo mobile application - for on-the-go, audio-based access to content

2. Kibo XS device - talking table-lamp for hardcopy printed and handwritten documents

3. Kibo Desk - web software for softcopy images and scanned PDFs

Salient features for printed, handwritten and scanned-digital documents:

1. Listen across 60 global languages

2. Translate across 100+ languages

3. Digitize to editable Unicode formats - Doc, Docx, Txt

4. Audio’tize into MP3 audio formats

Kibo uses advanced-AI and cloud-computation to deliver high speed and accuracy output to users in real-time with immersive reading-learning features such as; bookmarks, audio-highlighting, spelling-mode, content-summarization and more, delivering learning-experience on par with sighted-peers.


  • Kibo has 53,000 authenticated users to date; these users can be found in India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa, and the United States.

  • 380 Kibo XS devices are currently set up across schools, colleges, universities, public libraries and workplaces.

  • 120 schools and colleges have become inclusive for blind and visually-impaired students by adopting Kibo’s  products since July 2019.

Market Opportunity

Kibo is targeting a $1.8 billion global assistive technology market for visually-impaired students in the education sector. The B2B target segments include schools, colleges, libraries and NGOs. The B2C target segments include blind and low-vision students primarily in the Global South.

Organization Highlights

  • Cloud Partners: Kibo’s AI algorithms run on Cloud with the Google Firebase as a Cloud Partner.

  • Content Partners: Kibo provides a repository of 10 million+ accessible books (ePub, Daisy) to users in collaboration with Sugamya Pustakalaya and Bookshare as content partners.

  • Manufacturing Partners: Kibo has a well-established (4-year) relationship with manufacturing vendors who provide a streamlined supply-chain with end-to-end manufacturing

  • Distribution Partners: Assistive Technology distributors in India, Kenya, Thailand, US and UK who help scale the geographical presence, while ensuring quality customer support.

  • Incubation Partners: Generously supported by US-based Halcyon Incubator, UK-based Royal Academy of Engineering and One Young World, and India-based Digital Impact Square, Pune International Centre, IKP EDEN, Assistech Foundation, Action For India and Social Alpha.

  • Funding Partners: Supported through awards and grants by DBS Foundation, Prosus Group, Tata Group, JSPL Foundation, Mphasis, Social Alpha, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) - Govt. of India, Department of Science and Technology - Govt. of India, Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship - Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, and Pune International Centre.

Partnership Goals

Kibo seeks:

  • Global Assistive-tech / Ed-tech Distributors

  • Guidance, mentorship and connections to plan the US distribution strategy would help streamline and fast-track the process

Organization Type: For-profit, including B-Corp or similar models

Headquarters: Bengaluru, India

Stage: Growth

Working In: India, Pakistan, Indonesia, United States, Nigeria, South Africa

Current Employees: 13

Solution Website:

Solution Team:

  • Akshita Sachdeva CEO and Co-Founder, Trestle Labs

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