Indian human resources (HR) solution firm Darwinbox has raised some $72 million in its latest funding round, which includes the Gokongwei’s venture capital fund.
Darwinbox said the latest funding round has given the company unicorn status, a term used by the venture capitalists to describe a start-up with value of over $1 billion.
The latest round of funding was led by Technology Crossover Ventures along with participation from existing investors Salesforce Ventures, Sequoia, Lightspeed, SCB 10X, JG Digital Equity Ventures, Endiya Partners and 3One4Capital.
The total investment in the company now reached over $110 million, it said.
Since the last fund raise from Salesforce Ventures 12 months ago, the company has grown four times in the Philippines.
“It is expecting higher growth this year owing to enhanced demand for digital tools in the workplace post pandemic,” the company said in a statement.
The new funding will be used for the company’s global expansion plan by allowing it to accelerate its platform innovation, strengthen its product, engineering and customer success teams along with scaling their go-to-market presence in multiple geographies. The company is set to triple its team within a year aiming to add more than 100 employees in southeast Asia across its Manila, Singapore and Jakarta offices.
Juancho Jerusalem, the company’s vice president and head of Asia Pacific expansion, said the firm will expand its operations in the Philippines targeting the conglomerates, banking, retail, manufacturing sector that have a lot of blue-collar workers and other start-ups.
Jerusalem said previous to the pandemic, many local companies have sidelined the importance of securing human resources technology, or those applications that manages the company’s workforce, and mostly centered on how they can bring more customers into the company.
With the pandemic, however, companies now need to track their workforce’s productivity, including their vaccination status, especially with the work-from-anywhere status of many white-collar workers, while blue-collared workers need to report to the factory lines on a daily basis.
“The hybrid working environment in the Philippines is here to stay,” Jerusalem said.
Founded in late 2015, Darwinbox’s cloud based human capital management platform caters to human resources needs across the entire employee lifecycle. Their new product is powering digital HR for more than 1.5 million employees from 650 enterprises across the globe.
This includes local firms like JG Summit Holdings, Robinsons Bank, Straive which now became SPi Global, Shakey’s Pizza, NutriAsia, Delbros Group, along with leading southeast Asian firms Tokopedia, Zalora, Zilingo, Wilmar, Mitra Adiperkasa, Indorama, parts of Salim, Djarum group.
“We are fortunate to have a strategic and dedicated partner in Darwinbox. As a customer-centric organization, we are happy to be working with a partner who shares the same ideals as ours,” said Lance Y. Gokongwei, president and CEO of JG Summit Holdings Inc.
“Darwinbox genuinely values our feedback, and is committed to continuously improve their platform based on our needs. This collaborative partnership helps us achieve our HR goals faster and smarter, ensuring that our employees always have a rewarding and seamless experience.”
JG Summit uses Darwinbox’s platform to digitalize HR for several of the group companies under the Gokongwei Group which include JG Summit, Robinsons Retail Holdings Inc. and Summit Media.
“This investment energizes our mission to continue building technology that enables organizations to unlock the highest potential of their people. We have done this by building a product that puts employees squarely at the center and crafting meaningful experiences for them,” said Jayant Paleti, co-founder of Darwinbox.
“This has especially found resonance in this rapidly evolving world of work over the last two years with companies having to rethink how they attract, manage and retain their talent.”