James Uffindell

Bright Network secures £3.5 million Series A investment led by Maven and Seneca

Maven VCTs lead GBP3.5m funding round in Bright Network

Investment to drive technology development and expansion of sales and marketing

Maven Capital Partners (“Maven”), one of the UK’s most active private equity houses, has announced it has led a further investment in Bright Network (“the company”), a media technology recruitment platform which connects leading employers with the high quality graduate workforce of tomorrow. The transaction also includes investment from private equity firm Seneca Partners.

Maven originally invested in Bright Network in July 2018, alongside existing and angel investors, to support the launch of its new Software as a Service (SaaS) solution, and the company has since generated 50 per cent Year on Year revenue growth.
 
Bright Network, whose Chairman Zach Miles is the former CEO of multi-national recruitment company Vedior, currently has around 280,000 graduate or student members and connects exceptionally talented candidates with client organisations, including the likes of Goldman Sachs, EY, Dyson, P&G and the armed forces. The company has a key focus on providing high quality career opportunities for graduates of all educational and ethnic backgrounds, including those from the state-school sector
 
Through its innovative technology platform, Bright Network aims to equip the next graduate generation with the skills, connections, expert advice and training required to build a career in their chosen fields. It has developed superior data targeting and segmentation techniques to achieve higher candidate and employer engagement, which has enabled clients to achieve improved results relative to other talent acquisition channels.

With the current climate of uncertainty brought about by the pandemic, e-learning and the skills economy will be more important than ever. Bright Network’s recent report, What Do Graduates Want? Data Insights from the Future Workforce, revealed the coming generation of graduates are experiencing much lower confidence and a noticeable fall in employment opportunities as a result of Covid-19.

Dubbed the “Corona Class of 2020”, this group will disproportionately bear the economic brunt of the virus. As a direct and practical response, Bright Network has launched a new [virtual] scheme, Internship Experience UK,  that will aim to support the 800,000 people who will graduate from school or university this year. It offers three-day internship type experiences for all students and graduates across the country to help them gain skills, boost employability and build their network.

Maven´s funding will support Bright Network’s further business growth through investment in smart matching technology capabilities, as well as enhancing the sales and marketing resource working to bring more firms and early years talent to the platform.

Despite many client firms experiencing issues fuelled by skill shortages and economic uncertainty, the UK recruitment industry produced turnover of around GBP39 billion last year, with 85 per cent generated through contract placements and only 15 per cent through permanent roles. Notwithstanding the current challenges faced by businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic, searching for the best talent will continue to be a key priority for progressive businesses.
 
Melanie Goward, Investment Director at Maven, says:

“We are pleased to lead the fundraising and further cement our relationship with this dynamic, mission-led business. We believe that it is vital not only to support growth businesses in the short term, during the current uncertain economic climate, but also to set them up for long-term growth and expansion. Bright Network is led by a highly driven team, which has produced impressive results to date and we look forward to working with them as the business continues its growth. The team has built an innovative platform in the fast-growing graduate recruitment marketplace and already has strong relationships with a number of leading global employers.”
 
James Uffindell, Founder and CEO of Bright Network, says:

“We are delighted to continue to grow our relationship with Maven Capital Partners who have been instrumental to our growth and strategy over the past two years. In these unprecedented and uncertain times, more so than ever, graduates from all backgrounds need all the help they can get to understand what the opportunities are, and how best to find them. With 80 per cent of this year’s graduates worried that Covid-19 will affect their university grades and 83 per cent feeling under more pressure due to uncertainty caused by Covid-19, it’s incumbent on universities, employers and services like ours to step up our support. It’s paramount that we ensure graduates get into the right careers and that firms hire the right talent – this will help to rebuild an economy that has been severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.”
 
John Davies, Investment Director at Seneca Partners, adds:

“We are delighted to be involved with such an innovative business, operating in a niche market segment with multiple expansion opportunities. Bright Network is an established business, led by an experienced management team with an excellent track record of delivering against plan, which makes it a great fit with Seneca’s investment mandate.”

—ends—

Further information

For media enquiries or any questions about the investment, please contact:

Sapience Communications (PR to Maven)
Richard Morgan Evans 077 5108 7291 [email protected]
Borja Miquel 074 6347 7697 [email protected]

Maven Capital Partners
Melanie Goward 07813 455 64 [email protected]
Steve Marshall 0141 306 7585 [email protected]

Notes to Editors

About Maven Capital Partners UK LLP www.mavencp.com / @maven_cp

Maven Capital Partners UK LLP (Maven) is an independent private equity house focused on the provision of flexible equity and debt funding for UK SMEs, and one of the most active managers in the UK having invested around £500 million in more than 300 British businesses since 2009.

Headquartered in Glasgow, and with a regional office network throughout the UK, Maven has over 90 investment and support professionals providing a truly nationwide coverage. Maven has around £660 million funds under management and ready to invest, and manages assets for a variety of client funds, including Venture Capital Trusts, UK regional fund mandates, and Maven Investor Partners, a syndicate of institutional, family office and
experienced investors.

About Bright Network

Bright Network was founded in 2013 to fix a major problem in British society: how the brightest graduate talent, regardless of background, connects with the best employment opportunities.

For further information please contact [email protected]

Manoj Ranaweera

Manoj has founded, failed and successfully exited from a number of technology product companies as well as support organisations since 2004. Among them, Northern Tech Awards and edocr.com were acquired by GP Bullhound and Accusoft, Inc respectively. Today, Manoj is building a trusted support network for technology companies. He is working with founding teams to help them accelerate including raising investment and M&A.