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University Ventures, others back HR tech startup Shortlist

19 September, 2017

HR tech startup Shortlist has raised $1 million (around Rs 6.4 crore) in seed investment from US-based venture capital firm University Ventures and a clutch of other investors.

Impact investment firm ImpactAssets, US-based Bodley Group, Kenya-based seed fund Zephyr Acorn, Samir Shah of Sattva Capital and other investors from India and the US also participated in the round, the startup said in a statement.

The company will use the funds to enhance its data-driven talent screening product which automates the process of vetting applicants’ profiles using online competency-based assessments.

Shortlist helps companies in India and East Africa hire for early and mid-career roles based on demonstrated potential and skill. The startup’s technology creates a single application flow to engage candidates across a firm’s sourcing channels, including job boards, referral programmes and third-­party recruiters.

Shortlist then screens these candidates using chat-­based interviews, online competency assessments and other proprietary tools that predict how candidates will perform in a particular role. Employers receive access to interview-ready candidates, streamlining the time-consuming hiring process.

“Both job seekers and employers deserve a better way to find each other and gauge fit. We are thrilled to have a group of investors who share our desire to fix the broken talent marketplace, and believe the mix of expertise across India, East Africa and the US will add strategic value as we build on our early traction,” said Paul Breloff, co-founder and CEO of Shortlist.

Launched in 2016, the firm has over 80 clients including Ather Energy, M-KOPA, MicroEnsure and Xynteo. It has offices in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Nairobi.

The company has previously raised funds from AHL Venture Partners, Blue Haven Initiative, Shell Centenary Scholarship Fund and Shell Foundation.

New York-based University Ventures specialises in early stage and growth capital investments. It seeks to invest in companies involved in delivering programmes, products or services that improve accessibility and affordability of higher education. The firm also partners with universities and colleges to develop degree programmes and services that address economic and social needs.

The HR tech segment has elicited a lot of investor interest lately.

In June this year, enterprise human resources management platform Darwinbox Digital Solutions Pvt. Ltd raised $4 million (Rs 25.79 crore then) in its Series A round led by Lightspeed India Partners.

In December last year, HR analytics platform inFeedo raised $200,000 in a funding round led by existing investors Dheeraj Jain, managing partner at UK-based hedge fund Redcliffe Capital, and Anupam Mittal, founder and chief executive of People Group.

Gurgaon-based The HR Fund claims to be the first HR-focussed private investment firm in India. Founded by Varun Talwar and Pankaj Bansal in 2011, The HR Fund typically invests between $500,000 and $1 million. It is an investor in Sheroes, which provides jobs and career advice to women.

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University Ventures, others back HR tech startup Shortlist

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