Learning and development programs are often unpopular with employees and they fail to realise that these programs truly benefit them. This is where Paris-based Simbel integrates with SMBs’ existing HR stack and uses periodic performance reviews as a starting point for identifying individual learning and development needs.
It makes learning and development simple to deliver, allowing SMBs to benefit from the most up-to-date training from the best providers. Also, it helps HR teams streamline all their L&D ops and measure the impact of the training.
Focus on product development
Now, Simbel has netted a €4 million seed round led by Speedinvest (invested in Surfboard, Solvo.ai and cylib) and edtech-focused investor Brighteye. In addition, angel investors such as eFounders co-founder Thibaud Elziere, Figures co-founder Virgile Ringeart, Stupeflix co-founder Nicolas Steegmann, and Prestashop co-founder Alexandre Eruimy also participated in the round.
It will use the fund to help small and medium-sized businesses adapt to a rapidly changing world. The investment will accelerate Simbel’s product development.
Besides the investment, Simbel has launched out of beta and is available for SMBs across Europe.
“HR teams are supposed to inspire teams, create learning rituals, organise internal and external learning sessions, and oversee learning and development. But the reality is that SMBs typically only have one or two people to manage all these activities and still run their L&D on Excel sheets.” explained Simbel CEO and co-founder Loïc Jourdain.
“To stay competitive in today’s rapidly changing working environment, companies must make sure their employees have the up-to-date skills needed to perform their jobs well. It’s a massive task for any size organization and even more difficult for resource-strapped SMBs. Simbel’s commitment to these historically underserved businesses is making it possible for some 200,000 SMBs in Europe alone to now offer employees world-class learning & development at scale,” said Jeroen Arts, Partner with the Marketplaces & Consumer team at Speedinvest.
“We were immediately convinced by Loïc and Charles, who are methodical, determined and deeply knowledgeable founders. They have unique insights into the untapped L&D space for SMBs and have been able to build a product that delivers the fastest, cheapest and easiest way for employees to access curated and best-in-class training providers. Their vision resonated with us and we believe that Simbel can become the L&D standard for SMBs,” said David Guérin, Principal at Brighteye.
All-in-one staff learning solution
Simbel was founded by Loïc Jourdain and Charles Gras in 2021, combining Jourdain’s experience running business operations at French services marketplace Stootie, and Gras’ experience building L&D solutions for SMBs and corporates.
Currently, it is a team of 10 across nationalities such as French, Moroccan and Malagasy.
Simbel is an all-in-one solution, which helps HR teams to run learning and development operations seamlessly. It provides a central hub of curated content to make sure employees are empowered with the best training options.
The startup has developed its offering in partnership with its first clients, including Blablacar and Roland Berger, while in beta. Now, it has announced the launch of partnerships with the best HR and talent development software platforms for SMBs.