This article was originally posted by HR Tech Cube.
retrain.ai, the Talent Intelligence Platform that uses AI and Machine Learning to redefine the future of work by helping organizations upskill, retrain and place professionals in new roles faster and more accurately than ever before, announces today the close of a $9M Series A led by international fund Square Peg, following their $4M Seed Round in September 2020, led by Hetz Ventures, with TechAviv and .406 Ventures participating. Alongside the funding, the company announces a notable first deal with the Israeli Department of Labor which will be using retrain.ai to help flatten the national unemployment curve.
retrain.ai, at the forefront of HRTech innovation, is built to address the unprecedented shifts in the global workforce. Data suggests that one third of current occupations will be displaced in a decade, mainly due to automation; occupations and skill requirements are changing faster than ever, the skills gap is widening, and organizations and people are scrambling to keep up. retrain.ai’s Talent Intelligence Platform enables both employers and employees navigate change, through the entire talent life cycle, from hiring to retiring.
retrain.ai’s team of data scientists and AI luminaries (including its advisory board with members from Cambridge University, Oxford University and the Turing Institute) developed a groundbreaking platform that tackles the skills gap problem by analyzing millions of data sources – including corporate data and government statistics – in order to capture business growth drivers, analyze skills and skill-shifts cycles, and predict the ‘Jobs-of-the-Future’ allowing employers and employees to better understand which skills are emerging, evolving and expiring. The platform then maps an organization’s skills inventory, quantifies talent gaps, and recommends internal mobility and transition plans and personalized training pathways to bridge the skills gap.
retrain.ai is led by an all-star team, founded by three experienced entrepreneurs and technologists who have spent the last two decades building large scale software systems. retrain.ai’s CEO is Dr. Shay David, the serial entrepreneur known for previously co-founding the video enterprise leader Kaltura; Isabelle Bichler-Eliasaf serves as the company’s COO, after previously co-founding an HR startup, leading it to a successful acquisition; and Avi Simon, retrain.ai’s CTO, served as Chief Data Officer of the Israel Defense Forces and the CIO and CTO of the Israeli military intelligence corps, where he founded and commanded a number of R&D units specializing in utilizing Big Data for intelligent personnel placement.
“After successfully building Kaltura, a category-leading video platform company, I knew my next company should address one of the biggest challenges we are facing today, the skills gap,” said co-founder and CEO, Dr. Shay David. “What was once the regular tide of change in the workforce has evolved into a tsunami, especially pronounced by COVID-19 and its huge impact on the labor market. This has been a wake-up call. Unemployment and underemployment is going to affect a billion people globally in the next few decades. Our vision is to help 10 million workers get the right jobs by 2025 and help organizations navigate efficiently through the wave of change.”
retrain.ai is the first investment by Square Peg’s new $450M fund; the VC (whose total AUM amounts to $1 billion) previously invested in unicorns such as Canva, Stripe, Fiverr and Airwallex. The company will use the funds to accelerate growth and to expand its team.
“The world is on the brink of the biggest disruption to labor markets since the industrial revolution, brought on by changing business models and artificial intelligence. The retrain.ai team has built a ground-breaking platform that will help individuals and organizations manage the required transformation at scale,” said Paul Bassat, co-founder and Partner at Square Peg. “We were impressed by the team’s experience building and scaling companies and are excited to partner with their talented team on their mission to close the future skills gap.”
“Every organization we speak to is ‘rethinking their Future Workforce strategy,’ but how do you do this with thousands of employees, turnover rates that keep increasing and job requirements that are changing so rapidly?” said Judah Taub, Managing Partner at Hetz Ventures. “retrain.ai recognized that AI is a natural solution to effectively resolve the skills gap. AI is built for taxonomies, matching algorithms, optimizations and ongoing monitoring, and retrain.ai’s unified platform has the potential to revolutionize the way talent is hired, trained and re-trained in a world of rapidly changing needs across all industries.”
In addition to securing substantial funding, retrain.ai is already working with a number of S&P 500 companies as well as a number of governments. The first to sign with retrain.ai is Israel, which has proven its global leadership in executing its COVID-19 vaccination rollout via its renowned digital healthcare system, and is now committed to tackling the growing employment crisis.
The company was selected by the Israeli Department of Labor and JDC-Tevet, Israel’s leading social R&D organization, to spearhead a national data project as part of accelerating the recovery of the economic downturn due to the pandemic and apply next generation technologies to map at and help integrate millions of people into the changing world of work, effectively flattening the unemployment curve.
“The changing landscape of work requires a robust solution to help navigate the constant flux. Since March 2020 JDC-Tevet has doubled down on our efforts to find top notch AI based solutions,” said Einav Aharoni-Yonas, CEO of JDC-Tevet. “retrain.ai impressed us for two very strong reasons: the AI powered platform provides real time and accurate data about labor trends and actionable insights on an ongoing basis. We look forward to helping millions get back on track.”