Target Global backs Dutch startup Lepaya in $40M raise to help upskill staff

The lack of upskilling options in an organisation is one of the main reasons why employees look to quit and seek new employment options. In today’s world driven by the post-pandemic energies, retaining workforce is of utmost importance. But how do companies address this challenge?

Taking on the problem is Amsterdam’s soft skills training provider Lepaya. In one of the biggest financing rounds until now for an education technology company in Europe, it has raised $40 million Series B funding.

The funding follows a remarkable year for the ed tech startup where it has witnessed tripling revenue in 2021 and anticipates continued expansion for the next year. The company founded in 2018 has over 150 clients, including Microsoft, L’Oréal, Takeaway, Hellofresh, Mollie, Flink and KPMG.

Stellar list of investors

The raise was led by Target Global with participation from Noor van Boven (formerly N26), Anna Brandt (formerly Mollie), entrepreneurs Jordy Kool (Urban Gym) and Chris Zadeh (formerly Ophen), as well as existing investors Mediahuis Ventures and Tablomonto.

The funding brings the total capital raised to $ 47 million. The edtech platform will continue to drive its mission to make multinational corporations and fast-growing companies more productive by upskilling their workforce.

$370-billion market

By 2025, it is estimated that around 50% of all employees globally will need to be upskilled. As companies shift investment in talent to the core of business strategy to provide their workforce with the necessary skills, the scope in the segment is immense. In the $370-billion worth market of corporate learning, Lepaya’s growth has been further accelerated by the pandemic.

Founded in 2018 by René Janssen and Peter Kuperus, the startup aims to fill the skill gaps of the workforce by empowering professionals worldwide to be more effective in their ways of working.

Customised training programmes

The startup is looking at expansion of its offline and online training portfolio. It will deepen the personalisation of its training programmes, drive the integration of the learning experience into office productivity systems to facilitate impactful and easy-to-access training in a remote setting.

European expansion

The startup plans to grow international presence across all markets, further consolidating the ed tech market in 2022 with targets in Germany, the Nordics and the UK. Lepaya is already active across the globe with local offices in Amsterdam (the Netherlands), Berlin and Munich (Germany), Stockholm (Sweden) and London (UK). It will scale international team further, doubling headcount to 200 employees in the coming year.

Make employees fit for future of work

René Janssen, CEO and co-founder of Lepaya said: “The lack of upskilling options is one of the top three reasons employees want to leave the company they are working for. It is vital that leaders train for the challenges of the 21st century including remote work and empower their employees. Our platform provides training for power skills that make employees fit for the future of work.”

Peter Kuperus, Managing Director and co-founder of Lepaya: “The fresh funds would be utilised for market consolidation in 2022 and to develop our offline and online training offering, expand across Europe, and double our team size. We expect this to accelerate organic and inorganic growth to become the European market leader for upskilling.”

Bao-Y Van Cong, Investment Director at Target Global said: “With the European EdTech market still lagging behind the US and China, we believe there is an immense growth potential for Lepaya. The company’s international scale creates even more opportunity for the business.”

Cédric Cops, Investment Lead at Mediahuis Ventures added: “Ever since we partnered with the company, we have seen it build an incredibly effective upskilling platform, empowering thousands of professionals – as well as our own Mediahuis team – to be more effective at work.”

Some of the year’s biggest fundings in the ed tech space include Paris-based 360Learning, Vienna-based GoStudent and UK’s Multiverse.

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