SoftBank Vision Fund 2, backed by Japan's SoftBank Group Corp., said it will invest $50 million in software-as-a-service (SaaS) company SenseHQ with a valuation of more than $ 500 million, a senior company executive said.
SenseHQ, run by Sense Talent Labs Inc., is a HR-technology enabled talent engagement and recruiting platform that helps companies collectively recruit and engage with candidates in bulk.
"With this funding, we will continue to increase our market reach and awareness strategy with companies that are hiring extensively in fast-growing industries, including healthcare, manufacturing, logistics, and retail," said Sanjay Darmani, Managing Director of Sense's Indian Unit in an interview.
With this round, Sense has managed to raise $90 million in capital so far. SenseHQ is headquartered in San Francisco, but has since set up an Indian affiliate in Telangana.
The company primarily focuses on the US market and works primarily with recruiters to recruit candidates on a large scale.
Darmani said that it will now invest in expansion to regions such as Western Europe, the United Kingdom and other English-speaking countries.
The company also plans to use the proceeds to increase investment in its data science and machine learning platforms, and expand its product and technology teams, it said, adding that Sense aims to achieve a $ 100 million annual execution rate over the next 18 to 24 months.
The company was founded in 2015 by Anil Dharni and Pankaj Jindal to enterprise ready solution for talent acquisition teams. It first raised capital from Accel Partners and GV, formerly known as Google Ventures, in a Series A round in 2017, which also had investors such as Signia Venture Partners, IDG Ventures and Khosla Ventures.
Sense raised $ 13.5 million in Series B capital from Accel Partners and GV in 2019, followed by a Series C round led by Aavatar Capital, a SaaS-focused B2B technology and venture capital firm, in June 2021.
This is SoftBank's fourth investment in the SaaS business this year, but it is the smallest check the company has written in India to date. SoftBank Vision Fund 2 invested $ 90 million in the Whatfix corporate technology business in June of this year. In early May, it invested in Zeta, which provides services to fintech companies.
Zeta, which started off as a meals voucher product for corporates, has pivoted to a neo banking service provider.
SoftBank also made a subsequent investment in MindTickle in August, which propelled the company into unicorn club this year.
Chairman Masayoshi Son said last week that the venture capital fund has invested more than $3 billion in Indian businesses this year, chairman Masayoshi Son said last week. Son also said SoftBank had invested $14 billion in India over the past decade.
SoftBank's portfolio of companies in India includes Paytm, Snapdeal, Ola, Oyo, Flipkart, Swiggy, Delhivery and Lenskart.
Many of its portfolio companies are lining up initial share offerings over the next year.
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