South Korea-based human resource management platform Bend announced today that it has closed a $32 million Series B round with a valuation of $298 million. The latest funding, which brings its total to $42 million, was led by green oaks, with the participation of Global STD Partners.
The startup’s mission is to enable corporations to automate and streamline manual human resources work processes and focus more on people. Its automation tools optimize the employee experience to ensure a seamless flow of data between groups for use in payroll, e-signature support, on/offboarding, and people analytics. It also plans to release performance appraisal and talent relationship management tools in the first quarter of 2022.
“At flex we define HR as Human Relations, not Human Resources. We believe HR teams deserve world-class software to manage and serve their employees, but today it is clear that many organizations still use spreadsheets or legacy products to survive, said Haenam Chang, CEO of flex.
The two-year-old startup will use the proceeds to scale operations to meet demand, enhance its HR and SaaS automation products, and grow its headcount.
Series B funding comes behind nearly tenfold revenue growth compared to last year, driven by multiple product launches and new customers. The startup primarily serves SMBs in the IT sector. However, flex plans to expand the addressable market by targeting new industries in the SMB space this year. He did not disclose any user or customer numbers when asked.
Currently, flex is focused on growing in South Korea, offering a SaaS solution that modernizes HR functions and processes, which have been slow to adapt to technical progress over the last 20 years. The company said its deep understanding of cultural nuances in people management and HR regulations in the country help flex to be well positioned to offer a tailored suite of products to South Korean companies.
“While some companies have adopted solutions to track and improve the way they manage their employees, most still rely on instinct or insufficient data to make ad hoc decisions about employees. At flex, we empower clients with a trusted source of employee data and a rich set of tools to manage their people, maximizing individual and organizational performance. Our goal isn’t just to provide a great HR software solution – it’s to empower companies to better track and manage their most important assets, their people,” said Chang.
“Korea is one of the largest and most dynamic economies in the world, but has historically lacked a native solution for companies to manage and pay their employees – leaving companies frustrated and left to develop their own in-house solutions,” said Josh Cho of Greenoaks. . “Now, flex is rapidly building the country’s first state-of-the-art human resources information system and payroll platform. We are excited about their vision of an end-to-end product that will allow companies to handle all of their HR functions in one place, from performance management to recruiting, payroll and more.”