A software platform that helps businesses to connect with staff is aiming to double in size after raising a £780,000 investment.
WorkBuzz has secured the funding from Mercia and Foresight, both investing through equity finance from the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) alongside private investors. The Milton Keynes-based company, which currently employs 16 staff, is planning to create 15 new jobs this year – and to achieve 100% growth in each of the following two years.
The funding will also allow the company to add new features to its platform and establish a network of overseas partners to increase its international reach.
WorkBuzz helps organisations to engage employees, whether they working from home or in the office or factory, and provides real-time feedback to help making business decisions. The platform was launched in 2018 by Steven Frost (pictured) and arose from his experience in running an employee engagement consultancy. Take-up has grown quickly and it is now used by clients including Shell, Premier Foods and HS2.
As part of the investment, Jeremy Tipper – a serial entrepreneur with experience in HR tech companies – has been appointed as Chair.
Steven Frost, CEO of WorkBuzz, said: “The world of work is changing, with many people working remotely and using video calls or emails to communicate. WorkBuzz helps companies to navigate these challenges and build great cultures. Our vision is to improve the working lives of 1 million people, and this investment round will help us to make it happen sooner.”
Stephen Windsor of Mercia added: “WorkBuzz has been on exciting growth journey to date and has ambitious plans for the future. This investment will help support Steven and the team as they continue to scale the business. As part of the deal, we were also able to introduce a new Chair from the Mercia network who brings valuable experience to help them along the way.”
Ken Cooper, Managing Director at the British Business Bank, said: “Finance from the MEIF can help businesses to unlock growth and explore new opportunities. It’s great to see the Fund having this impact, enabling WorkBuzz to continue its rapid expansion, while creating new jobs in the region. We would encourage other Midlands’ businesses to consider MEIF funding for growth.”
Hilary Chipping, Chief Executive of SEMLEP, commented: “Taking care of employee wellbeing and retaining talent are key aspects of running a successful business, especially as we all adapt to the new way of working. This MEIF investment will enable WorkBuzz to further bring teams together in an easy, flexible way while unlocking job opportunities in Milton Keynes.”
Alistair Hammerton of Shoosmiths provided legal advice to Mercia.
The Midlands Engine Investment Fund project is supported financially by the European Union using funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 and the European Investment Bank.