Apna.co, a recruitment platform for grey and blue collar workers, has raised $8 million in Series A funding from existing investors Lightspeed India and Sequoia Capital India. The round also saw participation from new investors Greenoaks Capital and Rocketship VC.
Founded in December 2019 by Nirmit Parikh, Apna.co has created a vertical network for skilled professionals like carpenters, painters, field sales agents etc. This startup claimed that it has more than 1.2 million users engaging on its platform.
Apna.co, which is present in five cities, plans to use this fresh round of funding to enter newer markets, hire talent, and add more verticals.
Apna.co Founder and CEO Nirmit Parikh said, “Apna’s mission is to connect people with opportunities. We want to uplift workers who form the backbone of the economy and provide them a platform to grow in their career.”
Nirmit is a serial entrepreneur who previously founded Cruxbot (acquired by Kno, Inc, in turn acquired by Intel). He has previously worked at Apple.
Vaibhav Agrawal, Partner at Lightspeed India Partners Advisors, said, “The most powerful thing for me about Apna is its communities — I’ve seen people help each other start a business, learn a new language or find a gig! Communities rely on trust and make the model infinitely scaleable.”
According to Apna, it is creating a platform that goes beyond job opportunities as the users engage with peers to upskill themselves and identify their growth potential. The startup said in the last 30 days, it has facilitated more than one million job interviews, growing more than 3X month on month.
Harshjit Sethi, Principal at Sequoia Capital India, said, “There are over 250 million blue and grey collar workers in India at present and providing meaningful employment opportunities to this segment is one of the biggest challenges. Apna has built a unique product where users quickly come together in professional communities, an unmet need so far.”