Michael Jackson, leading venture capitalist and former chairman of technology business Sage, and Zach Miles, a former CEO of Vedior, the recruitment business that was acquired for Ã¢â€šÂ¬3.5 billion by Randstad in 2008, will join the company’s board. Michael Jackson will become Bright Network’s Chairman.
Bright Network members benefit from a social network, exclusive events, and one-on-one consultancy, all designed specifically to help students, graduates and young professionals connect with the top UK and international employers. Launched only 18 months ago, Bright Network already works with over 50 leading companies including Allen & Overy, Goldman Sachs, innocent drinks, The Mind Gym and KPMG. The company also runs Bright Stars – a new annual event to connect 200 of the very brightest state school sixth formers with leading blue chip recruiters.
Membership of Bright Network’s invitation-only network has been rising by 7% a week. 98% of Bright Network members graduate from Times Top 20 or Russell Group universities, 28% of them from Oxbridge, and the average member has 3As at A-level.
James Uffindell, CEO and founder, said: ‘The recruitment economy is worth over Ã‚Â£20 billion in the UK. Social media is radically altering the way that firms and candidates connect with each other, and both are demanding better, more targeted information. Bright Network combines the personal touch with an online presence – which is something recruiters and candidates both want. We’re proud to be at the forefront of this evolving model, and working with investors who understand and share our passion for social recruitment will allow us to expand the business both in the UK and overseas.’
James had the idea for Bright Network in 2007 to increase the opportunities both for bright graduates to find out about career options and for firms to identify the best talent. Since the launch of Bright Network in 2009 the site has attracted more than 280,000 page views and hosted over 50 recruitment events. And, most importantly, placed over 200 candidates into jobs and internships.
Michael Jackson said: ‘The application of technology to recruitment has massive potential to disrupt the current market, improve the flow of information and ensure firms find the right people faster and more cost efficiently. Bright Network, with its already established impressive client relationships, high quality and strong user base and core understanding of social media, is in the perfect position to continue to exploit the opportunity and I think it can quickly become a multi-million pound company.’
The funding will be used to invest in developing and improving the company’s social network (www.brightnetwork.co.uk), attract additional high-quality staff, and increase its marketing activity.
Bright Network already generates significant revenue and Uffindell forecasts strong growth in both users and partner firms in the next 18 months. Future plans include expanding Bright Network internationally.