The second quarter of the second year of the pandemic saw funding in HR tech and Worktech continue an upward trend globally. Investment continued to pour in the third quarter as well. Notable among these were Munich-based HR software startup Personio raising €233.4 Mn, people management platform Hibob raising $150 Mn in funding, talent acquisition software company Lever raising US$50 million in Series D funding, virtual recruitment firm Sense, which provides talent engagement and communication platform solutions for hiring raising US$50 million and predictive insights software company HR Acuity raising $47 Mn in funds.
Here’s a quick look at the significant fundraisings in the HR tech space and workspace globally in the third quarter of this year.
Global Funding/ Investments from Oct-Dec 2021
Personio: Munich-based HR software startup Personio has raised a Series E funding of €233.4 MN, valuing the company at €5.45 BN. The funding round was led by Greenoaks Capital Partners, with participation from Altimeter Capital and Alkeon. The fresh capital will allow Personio to evolve its product to lead the People Workflow Automation category and continue to execute its long-term oriented strategy, focused on the needs of its customers.
Transmira: Transmira, a Raleigh based virtual reality and information technology company, announced a multimillion dollar seed funding round. The funding round was open for other investors as well with Ventek Ventures, Ayre Venture, and other family offices already being part of it. The funds raised will be leveraged to launch Transmira's Omniscape elements along with spearheading its market presence as the first fully blended AR/VR metaverse platform.
Managr: Work tech startup Mangr has secured $1.5 Mn seed funding to support its growth plan for 2022. The funding round was led by Atlanta Seed Fund with participation from Tom Noonan, former CEO of Internet Security Systems Inc. and member of the board of directors for Intercontinental Exchange; David Dorman, former chairman and CEO of AT&T; and Kyle Porter, co-founder and CEO of Salesloft. Managr will now look at building and expanding in-house capabilities.
Hubilo: Hubilo, a leading global virtual events platform, said it has raised $125 million in a funding round led by Alkeon Capital and additionally, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Balderton Capital. The Series B funding will help the firm to further the development of the future of events and engagement on Hubilo’s platform.
Hibob: Hibob – the company behind 'bob', the HR platform that is changing the work experience for fast-growing, mid-sized businesses and their employees –announced $150 Mn in Series C funding. The round was spearheaded by General Atlantic, a leading global growth equity firm, with participation from existing investors including Bessemer Venture Partners, Battery Ventures, Eight Roads, Entrée Capital, and others. This new funding will be used to drive continued global expansion and develop innovative work tech modules that are designed to support customers’ growth.
HR Acuity: HR case management and predictive insights software company HR Acuity announced a $47 Mn minority investment from K1 Investment Management, an investment firm focused on high-growth enterprise software companies. In 2021, leveraging technology for managing sensitive and complex employee issues is no longer optional. HR Acuity is partnering with the K1 team to meet this accelerated demand by scaling the business through investments in talent and product innovation.
Bites: Employee communications and training industry company Bites raised $5Mn in seed funding. The funding round was led by Vertex Ventures Israel, while Surround Ventures, Oryzn Capital, Lyra Ventures, and J-Ventures also invested in the company as well. This money raised will support R&D, sales, and marketing efforts, as Bites executes its aggressive go-to-market plans by approaching retailers, consumer goods companies, healthcare providers, and other verticals.
Lever: Talent acquisition software company Lever raised US$50 million in a Series D funding round led by the Apax Digital Fund. According to the announcement, the funding will go to developing its platform capabilities in talent analytics, top-of-funnel talent discovery, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), as well as supporting growth in new markets, and product innovation.
Ahura AI: Edtech startup Ahura AI raised US$3 million in a seed round with participation from CP Ventures, 2.12 Ventures and others. Ahura was co-founded by CEO Bryan Talebi and new COO Alex Tsado. Its platform uses AI to provide one-on-one e-tutoring, on the basis that e-learning will be the main method of training in years to come, particularly for displaced individuals.
Quinyx: AI-powered workforce management (WFM) platform Quinyx raised $50 Mn (approx €44 Mn) in a fresh round of funding led by Battery Ventures. The recent round of funding brings Quinyx's valuation to $550 Mn and total capital to more than $89 million. The money raised will be utilised towards hiring and product research and development.
Sense: Virtual recruitment firm Sense, which provides talent engagement and communication platform solutions for hiring, raised US$50 million in a Series D funding round led by Softbank Vision Fund 2, more than doubling the total amount of investments it has received to date - the firm has currently raised a total of US$90 million.
Hermis: Employee engagement platform Hermis which was launched in direct response to the challenges faced by companies to keep the remote employees connected during the pandemic. Now, the business has closed on $1.75 million in seed funding. The round was led by Array Ventures and included True Blue Partners and Zoom Video Communications, Inc. via the Zoom Apps Fund.
Worca: Global HR platform Worca raised $1.5 million in seed funding to help tech companies scale up in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. Among the top-tier investors funding Worca’s expansion are Mucker Capital, Hyphen Capital and Gaingels, according to Worca CEO and founder Ti-Wen Lin. Specializing in cost-effective, global HR solutions, Worca empowers startups at all funding stages to scale up efficiently with the benefits of employer of record (EOR) services.
HireQuotient: HireQuotient Technologies Pte. Ltd, the Singapore-based startup automating HR interviews for companies, today announced a pre seed investment of USD $1.8 Million from leading angel investors. HireQuotient, will use the funding to accelerate technology and product development to enable them to better serve clients across different industries and roles in US, and EU.
DiviPay: Sydney-based startup DiviPay has announced raising $20 Mn in Series-A funding. The round was reportedly led by an undisclosed global fintech-focused growth equity investor. Among other investors were Global Founders Capital and Rapyd Ventures. Prominent industry experts such as Raffael Johnen from Auxmoney, the largest credit marketplace in continental Europe, and Guy Pearson, the founder of Tiger Global-backed accounting and client engagement platform Practice Ignition, also backed the round.
AdeptID: AdeptID, the developer of a machine-learning-powered talent matching software that identifies hidden talent in the workforce, announced a raise of $3.5M in seed funding led by Zeal Capital Partners. Better Ventures, JFF's Employment Technology Fund, and other investors participated in the round. The investment comes at a pivotal time for the future of work, as the pandemic amplifies labor shortages in high-growth sectors and increases the need for upward job mobility to fill middle-skilled roles.
Global Acquisitions from Oct-Dec 2021
Ally.io: Microsoft announced the acquisition of Ally.io, a software service that helps companies measure their progress against Objectives and Key Results, or OKRS, a common way that enables the management to measure both individual and business progress. Microsoft plans to add Ally to its family of employee experience products called Viva. The idea behind the acquisition of Ally is to provide a more transparent way of communicating company goals and objectives to employees.
Disco: Culture Amp acquired values recognition startup Disco for an undisclosed sum. The Disco team has joined Culture Amp, with former CEO and co-founder Jeremy Vandehey taking the role of Director of Product at Culture Amp. The acquisition allows Culture Amp to expand the tools available to its customers to recognise their values at work, to bolster the flow of work and integration expertise, and to drive meaningful change and deeper insights across organisations.
Cella: Randstad NV, the global leader in the HR services industry, announces that its US business, Randstad USA has acquired Cella, a staffing, managed solutions and consulting firm for the creative, marketing, and digital market. The acquisition enables Randstad to build a strong position in the significant and growing US marketing, creative and digital staffing and professional services market. By doing so, Randstad takes another step forward in supporting more people and organizations in realizing their true potential by combining the power of today’s technology with our passion for people.
Cornerstone OnDemand: Clearlake Capital Group, a US-based private investment firm focusing on technology, industrials, and consumer, announced last Friday that it has completed its acquisition of Cornerstone OnDemand in a US$5.2 billion transaction (US$57.50 per share, in cash). CSOD has been delisted and is now fully privately owned. The acquisition was originally announced in August, and was approved by CSOD's shareholders on 12 October - it took just a week to complete the deal once the approval was passed. According to the announcement, the acquisition will give CSOD full access to Clearlake's "proven software investment experience and operational improvement approach", which will "strengthen and accelerate the company’s next phase of growth and innovation".
Compright: Unit4, an enterprise cloud application for people-centric organisations, acquired Compright, a comprehensive compensation planning solution with customers in over 40 countries. Headquartered in San Francisco, Compright was founded in 2017 by the current Head of Product Barkat Ali with architect Debajit Saikia. The company delivers an intuitive and comprehensive compensation solution designed with mid-market customers in mind, particularly for those with more complex multi-national requirements.
People Test Systems: Swedish HR-technology company Assessio announced the acquisition of People Test Systems, Danish e-assessment company. Swedish HR-tech firm Assessio announced the acquisition of People Test Systems. With this acquisition, the Assessio Group is now further expanding in the Nordic region. Together with PTS, Assessio remains focused on its intention to help make the Nordic labour market both fair and inclusive.
Humanica and DataOn: Humanica Public Company Ltd (SET: HUMAN), a leading business solutions provider in Thailand, and DataOn, a leading Asia Pacific provider of human resources technology headquartered in Indonesia, entered into a letter of intent to combine the two businesses in an all-stock transaction. The transaction brings together the two market leading companies in Thailand and Indonesia respectively to create a world-class company in the region serving the rapidly growing market. The merger will enable a diversified portfolio of over 2 million users to be served with cutting-edge technology and innovations in Software and Multi-country payroll outsourcing that have been developed over more than 20 years.
Codecademy: Skillsoft announced that it is acquiring coding skills platform Codecademy in a US$525 million deal that will close within the first half of 2022. The deal, which comprises 40% cash and 60% stock, is the company's biggest since Skillsoft's June 2021 business combination and subsequent debut on the New York Stock Exchange. Codecademy, founded in 2011, offers free basic online courses in high-demand fields including cybersecurity, data science, and AI, as well as more in-depth paid versions. It has 40 million registered users spread across almost every country. The acquisition will drive the company's ability to build its curriculum, scale its work with businesses, and grow globally, particularly into fast-growing international markets like India.