October 29, 2020 – Handshake, a jobs platform for college students and recent graduates, has received an $80 million financing round led by GGV Capital with participation from EQT Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Spark Capital and True Ventures, along with Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Emerson Collective and Imaginable Futures.
“Since its founding, Handshake has been laser focused on delivering on its vision to democratize job opportunity by connecting employers with job seeking students at institutions of higher education, and has built a rich network of 17 million job seekers, 1,000 institutions of higher learning and nearly 500,000 employers,” said Jeff Richards, managing partner of GGV. “We’re delighted to join forces with the Handshake team to help the company further expand its impact by delivering innovative, industry-leading recruitment solutions and expanding into new markets.”
Handshake also announced that its platform is now available to serve about six million students who are earning valued credentials from community colleges and bootcamps. Employers in the technology, manufacturing and healthcare industries, including companies like Dell Technologies, have made it a strategic priority to recruit and hire talent from non-traditional institutions. Handshake is currently working with more than 70 community college partners and is helping employers across industries actively recruit talent from these partner schools.
“Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) is committed not only to educating its students but also to providing them the tools to access internships and employment opportunities,” said Sandy McKnight, associate vice president of access, learning and success at Cuyahoga Community College. “Tri-C and other community colleges offer clearly defined career pathways designed to meet evolving workforce needs. We are excited about working with Handshake to empower our students with the resources they need to be successful in the job market.”
In addition to expanding its offerings in the U.S., Handshake also announced that it has launched operations in the U.K. where it is working in partnership with higher education institutions such as the University of Cambridge, University of York and University of Liverpool.
“Since Day One, the vision for Handshake has been to build the largest, most inclusive community for early talent, one where no network is required, to provide members opportunities no matter where they go to school, what their background is, who their parents are or where they are located,” said Garrett Lord, Handshake co-founder and CEO. “The new infusion of capital will further the process of expanding our impact across the early talent landscape.”
Here’s a look at some recent funding deals secured by these companies from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
The Mom Project, a talent marketplace, closed a $25 million series B funding round, bringing total funding at the Chicago-based company to $36 million. The Mom Project aims to connect women, including mothers, with employment opportunities. Its platform has amassed more than 275,000 users and more than 2,000 companies, including brands like Apple, Nike, Gap and BP. “Together we’ve proven that hiring, retaining and supporting moms and caregivers isn’t just a nice thing to do — it’s great for business,” said Allison Robinson, founder and CEO. “We’re in a unique moment in time where companies are embracing flexible work and prioritizing inclusion, and are excited to rapidly accelerate our efforts to unlock the potential of moms in the workplace. Our latest round of funding will help expand our Enterprise product suite, build out our mom community engagement strategy and engage with more small business customers.”
Mya Systems, a conversational AI platform for hiring teams, announced that it has secured $18.75 million in Series C funding. The funding was led by Notion Capital with participation from earlier investors, Emergence Capital and Foundation Capital as well as Cisco Investments and Workday Ventures. Over the past year, Mya Systems gained tremendous momentum, seeing three times customer subscription growth in 2019 alone. Mya now supports over 460 brands, six of the eight largest recruiting firm, and 29 of the Fortune 100. Customers include industry leaders such as Hays, Adecco, L’Oreal, Deloitte and Anheuser Busch.
Headstart, a platform that leverages data science to help companies reduce unconscious bias in the hiring process, raised $7 million in funding led by AI-focused Silicon Valley venture capital firm FoundersX, with participation from Founders Factory. Launched in 2017, Headstart is one of a growing number of start-ups promising to help companies increase their diversity during recruitment drives. This is achieved through combining machine learning with myriad data sources to find the best candidates based on specific objective criteria.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media