Indonesian unicorn Go-Jek acquihires Bengaluru AI recruiter AirCTO in super-app bid

By Narinder Kapur

  • 12 Jun 2019
Credit: Thinkstock

Indonesian startup Go-Jek, diversifying away from its roots in ride-hailing to food delivery, courier and hairdresser services, and bill payment, has acquihired Bengaluru-based artificial intelligence (AI) recruitment platform AirCTO, owned by LaunchYard Technologies Pvt. Ltd.

The Google- and Go-Jek also announced the opening of a second engineering centre in India in Gurugram, as part of which the firm will start its Go-Food product division. The firm, which has another engineering centre in Bengaluru, plans to hire 100 employees for its new centre in Gurugram, taking the company’s total headcount to 500 in India by year-end.

As part of the acquisition deal, whose financial details were not disclosed, AirCTO’s team will join Go-Jek to help recruit coding talent for scaling up the Indonesian firm’s “anything, everything” super app.

Go-Jek India managing director Sidu Ponnappa said AirCTO’s team will use its solutions to help the company scale up its hiring processes.

Founded by Atif Haider, AirCTO says it uses a combination of human and AI systems to help companies manage their hiring processes for developers. The startup sources, screens and conducts interviews with applicants based on client needs.

In 2017, former Nokia director Francesco Cara invested an undisclosed amount in AirCTO. Founder Atif Haider had said the funding would be used to build an AI chatbot to help human resources departments to automate the initial screening process. In addition, the company had said it would also spend significantly on expanding its sales and marketing teams.

“We look for digital footprints of the candidate on coding sites (such as StackOverflow and Github) and many more data points, which help companies easily shortlist resumes instead of doing it manually,” Haider had said.

Go-Jek, founded in 2010 and operated and owned by PT Aplikasi Karya Anak Bangsa, provides several services on a single application. The firm, which operates across Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia, is the first Indonesian unicorn, or a startup with a valuation of at least $1 billion.

Software-based hiring platforms that have raised money in recent times include software-as-a-service-based Skillenza, which in May raised $1 million (around Rs 7 crore then) in a pre-Series A funding round led by CBA Capital’s Education Catalyst Fund.

In March last year, data analytics firm Traxcn’s founder Abhishek Goyal and Flipkart executive Mekin Maheshwari picked up an undisclosed stake in Purple Quarter, which scouts for top technology executives.

To discuss the emerging opportunities and challenges in dealmaking, Mosaic Digital, the corporate banner behind, is organising its next edition of M&A Summit on 26 June in Mumbai.

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