HR tech startup Propel wants to power the open talent economy via tech communities

HR tech startup Propel wants to power the open talent economy via tech communities

In the latest development, Propel, a Lagos- and Berlin-based startup that wants to build sustainable talent pipelines for communities and help global companies derisk the process of hiring remote talent from emerging markets, particularly in Africa, has secured €2.5 million (~$2.74 million) in seed investment.

The round was led by Amsterdam-based No Such Ventures, with participation from APX (an accelerator by Axel Springer Digital Ventures and Porsche Digital), Golden Egg Check and Future of Learning Fund. The startup, founded in 2020 by Sunkanmi Ola, Seun Owolabi and Abel Agoi, intends to use the investment to drive the roll-out and adoption of its community-as-a-service platform and drive €1 million in revenue generated for communities by Q4 next year.

Africa has the youngest population globally and its tech talent pool is bound to widen, aided by the proliferation of online learning, STEM courses and, most importantly, communities, which play an important role in placement and an area of focus for Propel.

A year into placing local tech talent in retail and automotive companies like Porsche and Mercedes, Propel noticed that these talent were connected to a community such as developer groups, talent incubators and training schools, slightly changing the startup’s focus (according to the startup, 8 out of 10 people in emerging markets belong to a community.) Hence, its community-centered approach.

Propel provides a pipeline for talent in these tech communities, connecting them with a network of companies driven by diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) mandates and specific job roles that need to be filled.

In exchange for providing last-mile infrastructure, Propel plugs into the diverse pools of talent within these tech communities spanning multiple skill sets from software development to design, data science to no-code and other digital transformation skills.

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