Apna, the market-leading professional networking and jobs platform for India’s rising working class, has raised a $70 million 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. The investment amounts to an endorsement of Apna’s undisputed market leadership and stellar business growth. With this investment Apna has now raised over $90 million and is now valued at $570 million, within 16 months of product launch.
Apna will use the proceeds to strengthen its presence in existing cities and expand pan-India over the next 6 months to help restart India’s economy as it recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. The team plans to double down on their edtech platform for skilling by continuing to invest in hiring exceptional talent and building world class engineering and product capabilities. Additionally, Apna plans to expand to high potential international markets such as Southeast Asia and the United States in the coming year.
“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 million 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.” Nirmit Parikh, Founder & CEO, Apna
Founded in 2019, Apna is on a mission to connect people to opportunities. It’s tech-driven approach to harness the power of communities has enabled access to better jobs and entrepreneurship for millions of Apna’s users. This has been especially crucial in a pandemic year which has seen severe disruption to the labour markets due to intermittent lockdowns. Networking on Apna changed the life trajectory of Shivam Singh, an aspiring graphic designer from a small Indian town who lost his job during the pandemic. He found expert guidance and customers on the Apna app to build a successful business. Today he serves as an inspiration to countless aspiring entrepreneurs and designers. Millions of such lives are transformed every month by Apna, as it focuses on delivering a double bottom line.
Today, the app comprises 60+ communities for skilled professionals like carpenters, painters, field sales agents and many others. The app allows users to access local job opportunities, network with peers, practice for interviews, share their accomplishments, and gain new skills.
In the short span of a year, Apna has become the app of choice for Indian professionals. Apna has witnessed exceptional growth since its launch – with 10 million+ users and 100,000+ employers, relying on Apna to find appropriate job opportunities and talent respectively. Over the past three months Apna has doubled the number of Indian cities in which it is present to 14. This growth has enabled Apna to catapult from a challenger to the market leader in its category. It has also attracted top global and local talent from firms like Uber, BCG & Swiggy.
“We have been incredibly impressed with Apna’s stellar growth over the last year. They have built the market leading platform for India’s workforce to establish digital professional identity, network, access skills training, and find high quality jobs. Employers are engaging with Apna at a rapid pace to help find high quality talent with low friction which is leading to best in class customer satisfaction scores. 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.” Nikhil Sachdev, Managing Director, Insight Partners
Apna’s product-led approach to a globally relevant problem makes it infinitely scalable. Griffin Schroeder, Partner, Tiger Global said “Apna’s focus on digitizing the process of job discovery, application and employer candidate interaction has the potential to revolutionize the hiring process. The Apna app also helps workers form professional networks and upskill themselves. We are excited to partner with the team as they expand to new markets in India and abroad.”
Apna’s sophisticated data-science led algorithm matches candidates with employers taking into account their skills and experience. This has enabled employers and recruiters to solve for trust, relevancy and candidate volume. Several of India’s leading companies, such as Zomato, Burger King, Bharti-AXA, Delhivery, Teamlease, G4S Global, Shadowfax and 1MG rely on Apna to address their most urgent and critical hiring needs. In addition, Apna has partnered with some of India’s leading public and private organizations. Apna is supporting National Skill Development Corporation, UNICEF Yuwaah, the Ministry of Minority Affairs of India, in their endeavor to provide better skilling and job opportunities to candidates.