upGrad acquires recruitment firm Rekrut India

Vaishnavi Gupta
Vaishnavi Gupta December 16 2020 - 14 min read
upGrad acquires recruitment firm Rekrut India
This 100% acquisition marks an unprecedented M&A in India, where an edtech company has acquired a recruitment firm.

upGrad, India’s largest online higher edtech has acquired Rekrut India, the recruitment and staffing solutions company. This 100% acquisition marks an unprecedented M&A in India, where an edtech company has acquired a recruitment firm.

The Mumbai-based Rekrut India provides solutions to build organisations' human capital through their deep sectoral expertise, an extensive network of 100+ recruiting experts, and pioneering products that are agile & adaptive given the complexities of hiring in today’s times. Rekrut has built a wide reach through its multiple hiring models which allow simplified hiring. It is currently working closely with many corporate Startups, MSMEs, and large enterprises.

Driving ROI of education through career outcomes has been a core differentiator for the edtech major upGrad. Acquisition of Rekrut will turbocharge its career engine by opening up wider placement opportunities and propelling accessibility of upGrad learners to Rekrut’s hiring partners.

Talking about the acquisition, Ronnie Screwvala, Mayank Kumar, and Phalgun Kompalli, Co-Founders, upGrad, in a joint statement, said, “Rekrut will now open the floodgate of career opportunities for upGrad learners. Hence, we are thrilled to announce the onboarding of the team, a significant step in making upGrad a career powerhouse for professionals. This move is integrally aligned with our company’s vision of powering career success for every member of the global workforce as their trusted lifelong learning partner.”

Post the acquisition, Rekrut India, a 100% subsidiary of upGrad, will continue to operate independently, with Ajay Shah continuing as the Managing Director. Given the massive potential of the recruitment sector, which in itself is an INR 15,000 crore market, upGrad firmly believes an independent business in this sector will provide strong non-linear growth opportunities for the edtech major.

Ajay Shah, Managing Director, Rekrut, stated, “Currently in the market we operate in, we don’t give jobs to people; we give people to jobs. This is predominantly due to the skill gap in India. The upGrad-Rekrut synergy will disrupt the ecosystem and build an end-to-end supply chain of manpower, where Rekrut is the demand partner providing cutting-edge jobs and upGrad will supply the highly skilled, and future-ready talent. We will be taking the learners’ pipeline to the relevant industry stakeholders thereby helping them find the right talent with speed, while in parallel offering a wider choice of career transition for upGrad learners.”

Gaurav Kumar, President - Corporate Development, upGrad, added, “Our M&A strategy is focused towards building a wider higher education and career ecosystem, and Rekrut fits-in perfectly with its capabilities to drive tangible ROI for our learners. upGrad’s plans of 300% growth in its paid learner base and driving career outcomes for these 1.2 million learners by FY25, will be further accelerated with this strategic acquisition.”

The Rekrut acquisition comes at a time when online education has started to gain greater acceptance with recruiters, thereby thawing the age-old offline-online perception divide when it came to hiring talent. Prior to Rekrut, upGrad’s in-house career services team was reaching out to around 100-200 hiring partners in a year and drove over 1000 career transitions in 2020, with an average salary hike of 44%. With Rekrut’s expertise and core business being driving placements, upGrad is fairly confident to boost its current volume by 10X and drive meaningful career outcomes for learners, at scale, and with speed.

Franchise Facts: upGrad

Year of Establishment: 2015

Year Started Franchising: 2020

Initial Investment: 16-17 Lakh

Franchise Fee: 5Lakh + GST

Royalty Fee: 15%

Area Required: 500-700 sq ft

Payback Period: 6-8 months

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