Recruitment startup for grey and blue-collar workers Apna has raised $70 Mn in Series B round led by Insight Partners and Tiger Global. Existing investors, Sequoia Capital India, Lightspeed India, Greenoaks Capital and Rocketship VC have also participated in the round.
Apna was founded in December 2019 by Nirmit Parikh to offer a professional network of grey and blue-collar workers. The app comprises 60+ vertical communities for skilled professionals like carpenters, painters, field sales agents and many others, where users get access to local job opportunities, network with peers, share their accomplishments and gain new skills. With this investment Apna has now raised over $90 Mn and is now valued at $570 Mn, within 16 months of product launch.
In March 2021, it had raised $12.5 Mn in an extended Series A funding round led by Sequoia Capital India and Greenoaks Capital. In August 2020, it raised $8 Mn in Series A funding round from Greenoaks Capital and Rocketship VC.
Apna will use the Series B proceeds to strengthen its presence in existing cities and expand pan-India over the next 6 months. The team plans to double down on their edtech platform for skilling by continuing to invest in hiring talent and building engineering and product capabilities.
“At Apna we are determined to take a fresh approach towards solving employment and skilling challenges for billions. Over the last month itself, Apna has facilitated more than 15 Mn job interviews and work related conversations where users have helped each other to start a business, find a gig or learn a new skill. We are still in the early stages of solving the problem and are excited to continue on this journey with the backing of our new partners,” said Parikh, CEO, Apna
Additionally, Apna plans to expand to high potential international markets such as Southeast Asia and the United States in the coming year.
The Bengaluru-based startup claims 10 Mn+ users and 100,000+ employers, relying on Apna to find appropriate job opportunities and talent respectively. Over the past three months Apna claims to have doubled the number of Indian cities in which it is present to 14. It has also attracted top global and local talent from firms like Uber, BCG and Swiggy. It competes with the likes of WorkIndia, Able Jobs and MyKaam.
“We believe that our investment will enable Apna to continue their steep growth trajectory, scale up their operations, and improve access to opportunities for India’s workforce,” said Nikhil Sachdev, Managing Director, Insight Partners.
Apna’s algorithm matches candidates with employers taking into account their skills and experience. It works with recruiters like Zomato, Burger King, Bharti-AXA, Delhivery, Teamlease, G4S Global, Shadowfax, and 1MG.
Griffin Schroeder, Partner, Tiger Global said “Apna’s focus on digitising the process of job discovery, application and employer candidate interaction has the potential to revolutionize the hiring process. We are excited to partner with the team as they expand to new markets in India and abroad.”
In addition, Apna has partnered with National Skill Development Corporation, UNICEF Yuwaah and the Ministry of Minority Affairs of India among others to provide skilling and job opportunities to candidates.