Apna.co Raises $12.5 Mn From Sequoia Capital India And Greenoaks Capital

The funds raised will be used to strengthen its presence in existing cities, expand into new geographies

By
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Vertical professional networking platform Apna.co for India’s working class on Tuesday announced to have raised $12.5 million led by Sequoia Capital India and Greenoaks Capital. Existing investors, Lightspeed India and Rocketship.vc also participated in the round.

Apna.co

The funds raised will be used to strengthen its presence in existing cities, expand into new geographies, invest in exceptional talent, as well as build engineering and product capabilities.

“At Apna, we aim to uplift the workforce in every sense. Over the last six months, we have facilitated over 16 million recruiter-candidate interactions and over 30 million work-related conversations where users have helped each other to start a business, find a gig or learn a new skill,” said Nirmit Parikh, founder, and chief executive officer, Apna.co.

Founded in 2019, Apna.co is helping India’s rapidly expanding working class of grey and blue-collar workers unlock unique professional, networking, and skilling opportunities.

The app comprises vertical communities for skilled professionals such as carpenters, painters, field sales agents, and many others. Users in the app get access to local job opportunities, can network with peers, practice interviews together, share their accomplishments, and gain new skills.

“Apna is well on its way to building a professional social network for India with millions of users in just a few months of launch. Apna aims to provide its users with access to jobs, the upskilling to thrive in these jobs, and a community to support them professionally. Sequoia Capital India first led the seed round 18 months ago. The team is excited about the deeper partnership on the back of Apna’s strong user love, rapid growth, and the addition of top talent,” shared Harshjit Sethi, principal, Sequoia India.

The company has witnessed exceptional growth in a short span since the launch- with over 6 million users and more than 80,000 recruiters, the platform has grown over fifty-times in the last eight months alone.

“Apna has taken a jobs-centric approach to upskilling that we are very excited about. Lack of accountability has been the core issue with current skill / vocational learning alternatives for grey and blue-collar workers. Apna has turned the problem on its head by creating net-positive job outcomes for anyone who chooses to upskill on the platform,” added Vaibhav Agrawal, partner, Lightspeed India.

Several companies including Urban Company, Kirloskar, Zomato work with the platform for its speed, relevancy, hiring, and excellent customer support.

With plans to expand internationally, the company believes it is serving an urgent need that’s relevant across markets, including in emerging and established ones like South East Asia and the US. The company raised $8 million in the Series A round in September 2020.