Apna.co, a vertical professional networking platform, has raised an additional $12.5 million in a new funding round led Sequoia Capital India and Greenoaks Capital.
Existing investors Lightspeed India and Rocketship.vc also participated in the round.
The Bengaluru-based recruitment platform has earlier raised $8 million in its Series A funding round in September 2020 led by existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners and Sequoia India with participation from Greenoaks Capital and Rocketship.vc.
Founded in 2019 by Nirmit Parikh, Apna provides a platform that helps blue and grey-collar workers learn new skills, connect with one another and find jobs. The platform comprises vertical communities for skilled professionals like carpenters, painters, field sales agents and many others. Users can get access to local job opportunities, network with peers, share their accomplishments, practice interviews, and gain new skills.
Apna said it has more than six million users and over 80,000 recruiters on its platform and claims to have seen 50X growth in the last eight months.
Speaking about the platform, Nirmit Parikh, Founder and CEO of Apna, said in a statement,
“At Apna, we aim to uplift the workforce in every sense. Over the last six months we have facilitated 16 million-plus recruiter-candidate interactions and 30 million-plus work-related conversations, where users have helped each other to start a business, find a gig, or learn a new skill.”
According to a statement, the company will use the funds to strengthen its presence in existing cities, expand to new geographies, invest in exceptional talent, as well as build sophisticated engineering and product capabilities.
Commenting on the investment, Harshjit Sethi, Principal at Sequoia Capital India, said,
“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 skilling 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.”
Apna is currently having its operations in Delhi-NCR, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune, Jaipur, Ranchi, and Ahmedabad. It plans to expand into new metros and tier two cities in India this year, and also has plans to expand internationally in South East Asia and the US too.