Maven VCTs lead £2.5 million investment in Bright Network
Maven has led the £2.5 million investment in Bright Network, a media technology platform which enables blue-chip employers to reach, identify and recruit high-quality graduates and young professionals. The transaction includes a £2.15m investment by Maven VCTs, together with £0.4m from existing and new angel shareholders.
Bright Network’s platform uses advanced data analytics and cutting-edge technology to pre-screen candidates and ensure that its membership contains only the top 20% of graduate talent. Diversity and inclusion is also a key element of the network, 58% of candidates are female, 40% are black, Asian, or from ethnic minorities, and 75% of all members are state-educated. To date the business has made over 10,000 successful hires and year on year has increased applications to its clients by over 100%.
The active management of this pool of candidates ensures that high standards are maintained, delivering a strong response and conversion rate for employers, and achieving engagement levels that are currently 2.5x higher than the industry average. The quality of Bright Network’s membership also helps drives efficiencies in the recruitment process and improved candidate shortlisting outcomes for employers. As a result, Bright Network has established a strong client base of over 250 employers, which includes global blue-chip organisations such as Bloomberg, Deloitte, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, PwC, P&G SkyScanner and Vodafone.
Students joining the network benefit from a range of practical advice, industry insights and the chance to connect with leading employers, delivered online or in person at exclusive events. The platform will also soon deliver an online Academy which will offer free courses to up-skill students to prepare them for the world of work. Contact is maintained with individuals once they have started employment and as they progress their careers, extending the market opportunity of the platform into the wider young professional recruitment market which is estimated to be worth £1 billion per annum.
London-based Bright Network is led by serial entrepreneur James Uffindell, who previously established, grew, and successfully exited from another business in the education sector. Bright Network is chaired by Zach Miles, who was the founder and latterly CEO of Vedior, a multinational recruitment company, which was acquired by Randstad for €3.3 billion in 2008.
Maven’s funding will support further growth of the business by investing in sales and marketing for its existing ‘Enterprise’ platform and also launch its new Software as a Service (SaaS) solution for the larger, but more fragmented SME market. ‘High Growth’ will provide human resources managers in these organisations with a greater number of high quality and relevant applications, helping speed up the recruitment process, delivering significant cost efficiencies.
“We are delighted to lead the fundraising for Bright Network. The highly driven management team, led by James Uffindell, who has proven experience delivering shareholder value by exiting similar businesses in the sector, has developed a clear strategy to grow the business profitability through its existing and new product lines. In High Growth, James has identified a gap in the SME graduate recruitment market focused on helping employers easily recognise and reach the brightest graduates and young professionals and we looking forward to working with him and the team over the coming months and years.”
Melanie Goward, Investment Director at Maven
"Our mission is to make sure every student receives the very best possible careers advice. By harnessing rich data insights and technology we can support the next generation of talent and enable companies to find their needles in the haystack. With visits to the Bright Network platform doubling year on year and a trusted track record of proven ROI for 250+ top employers, we’re modernising the graduate recruitment industry. We’re very excited to bring the experience and expertise of Maven on board at this crucial stage to help us grow.”
James Uffindell, CEO at Bright Network