Exclusive: Cloud-based HR tech startup Qandle raises pre-Series A funding

Exclusive: Cloud-based HR tech startup Qandle raises pre-Series A funding
Himanshu Aggarwal and Chayan Mukhopadhyay, co-founders of Qandle
27 Feb, 2018

Qandle, a cloud-based HR management and employee engagement platform for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), has raised $1.2 million (Rs 7.7 crore) in pre-Series A funding led by Hong Kong-headquartered venture capital firm Redwood Internet Ventures Ltd.

A top Qandle executive told TechCircle that Arun Chandra Mohan, former managing director at fashion e-tailer Jabong and ex-venture partner at Rocket Internet, had also participated in the round.

Founded in late-2016 by IIM-Bangalore alumnus Chayan Mukhopadhyay and IIT-Roorkee graduate Himanshu Aggarwal, Gurgaon-headquartered Qandle offers an end-to-end HR solution covering core HR, talent management, goals and feedback, performance reviews, expense management, and payroll, among others.

The software includes strategic HR functionalities as well as day-to-day admin activities while also placing emphasis on employee experience and engagement. Qandle is available as iOS and Android apps as well.

Owned and operated by Digital Ecom Techno Pvt. Ltd, the company will use the fresh funds to invest in product and market expansion, Mukhopadhyay said.

Qandle, which officially launched its services around five months ago, claims to have acquired customers across diverse industries such as internet, healthcare, pharma, logistics, and real estate.

Its customers include startups such as Nearbuy, Milkbasket, Limetray, and Cogoport, as well as big corporations like PDS Multinational Fashions, and International Land Developers.

“The biggest problem HRs face with an HR software is to get the employees to use it,” Mukhopadhyay said. "With functionalities like automatic bill details capturing from a scan, auto attendance and check-ins from employee locations, to SOS feature for employees safety, we have built a product for humans, not resources."

Qandle works on software-as-a-service (SaaS)-subscription model and charges on the basis of active employees per month.

Co-founder Mukhopadhyay previously worked with American Express and later joined Jabong, where he headed the firm's marketplace operations.

He later founded Perkkx, a mobile-based service which provided exclusive offers and benefits for employees of partner organisations.

Aggarwal was the head of engineering at restaurant discovery platform MunchAdo before launching Qandle. He also had stints at Naukri and ibibo Group in the past.

Deals in the space

The larger human resource management and services sector has attracted considerable attention from investors of late.

Last week, Gurugram-headquartered Bash.ai, an artificial intelligence-based HR automation tool provider, acqui-hired tech startup Wemo, which offers UX design expertise for building mobile apps and websites.

Gurgaon-headquartered HR services firm PeopleStrong said last month that it would acquire online referral hiring platform GrownOut for an undisclosed amount.

Earlier in January, Bhavin Turakhia-promoted fintech startup Zeta, which offers digital employee solutions, had picked up a minority stake in PeopleStrong for an undisclosed amount.

Last September, HR tech startup Shortlist raised $1 million in seed investment from US-based venture capital firm University Ventures and a clutch of other investors.

In June, enterprise human resources management platform Darwinbox secured $4 million (Rs 26 crore) in a Series A funding round led by Lightspeed India Partners.