AmCham Slovakia


Recently, Apollo launched the Balloon Platform to connect revolutionary Online Learning courses with career-relevant skills.

In November 2013, Apollo held an online survey of approximately 300 IT and technology hiring managers, and found that:

  • 73% have a hard time finding qualified applicants in IT/technology,
  • 95% believe that ongoing education and skills development are critical for IT/technology candidates, and even more so for current employees,
  • 94% have turned down candidates due, at least in part, to a deficiency in specific skills areas.

To solve the growing skills gap between individuals who are seeking careers and employers who are seeking a well-trained workforce, Apollo Education Group  launched Balloon™, an online career skills and learning marketplace, which features many of the world’s leading technology companies and education providers. The platform helps users to identify customized career paths, understand the knowledge and skills required by employers along that path, and learn from the right courses to improve their chances in a competitive labor market. Balloon’s initial focus is on providing a course and skills to support the global technology industry, with plans to expand into additional career fields.
“After talking to more than 25 leading technology companies, we created career-focused education programs which address the needs of global employers, as well as the worldwide learners in need of better real-life skills and training,” said Greg Cappelli, chief executive officer of Apollo Education Group. “With Balloon, we are directly connecting advanced technology companies with individuals seeking the knowledge that they need to help them to advance in their careers”.

“Microsoft is proud to participate in the launch of Balloon Platform,” said Carrie Francey, a senior director at Microsoft. “For more than two decades, Microsoft has been a leader in the training and certification ecosystem, focused on closing the skills gap by sending career-ready professionals into the marketplace. Balloon is the dynamic approach for anyone hoping to build or enhance their career in the technology industry.”

“With the increased adoption of cloud computing and Big Data technologies, education and training are critical. As both a provider of advanced technical education, and an employer seeking skilled technical employees, it is easy to see the benefits that a marketplace like Balloon provides,“ said Tom Clancy, vice president, EMC Education Services.

“At Amazon Web Services, we believe that innovative solutions such as Balloon will help to produce new skilled workers, and also to connect these workers with employment opportunities around the world,” said Maureen Lonergan, director of training and certification at Amazon.

About Apollo Education Group
Apollo Education Group, one of the world’s largest private education providers since 1973, offers innovative and distinctive educational programs and services, online and on-campus, at the undergraduate, masters and doctoral levels. Its educational programs and services are offered throughout Europe, the United States, Asia, Australia and Latin America, as well as online throughout the world.  Its ultimate vision is to transform the distribution, pricing and consumption of learning worldwide, and to create learning experiences that are light-years ahead of what’s currently available. Apollo created the Innovator’s Accelerator, which teaches business executives how to cultivate innovation within themselves and their organizations. Designed and taught by some of the world’s leading authorities on innovation, it provides insight and tools through a multimedia learning platform, to help turn executives into innovators who are ready to be the catalyst for change.

BPP Professional Education is part of Apollo Global, and is the first choice provider for employee development among some of the world’s largest commercial organizations with offices in Slovakia and Europe. BPP is employer focused and profession oriented, making best use of technology in order to support students in meeting the latest needs of employers. Carl Lygo, CEO of BPP Holdings Ltd shared his vision: “I think the way forward for BPP is to continue to concentrate on professional education areas, where we can demonstrate to students that we add value by offering study courses that employers value the most, either because they have been involved in the design or because the programs solve a particular problem.


Mariana Janceva, Business Development Manager, BPP Professional Education