Go1 achieves double unicorn status after US$100m raise

Go1 achieves double unicorn status after US$100m raise

Go1 CEO and co-founder Andrew Barnes.

Workplace training technology company Go1 has achieved a valuation of more than US$2 billion ($2.78 billion) following its second major capital raise in the space of 12 months, with investors showing faith in continued employer demand to retain talent through upskilling and personal development.

The US$100 million ($139 million) raise was completed in May with backing from AirTree Ventures, Blue Cloud Ventures, Five Sigma, Madrona, Salesforce Ventures, and SoftBank Vision Fund 2.

The Queensland-based education technology company, whose founders were the Australian Young Entrepreneurs of the Year in 2021, has been investing in global growth to the point that North America recently emerged as its largest market. 

Since achieving unicorn status in mid-2021, Go1 has been consolidating its footprint as one of the world’s largest corporate education content hubs for on-demand training and resources, expanding its reach in Southeast Asia with offices in Malaysia and Singapore, and in April acquiring Swiss-French group Coorpacademy for an undisclosed sum. Closer to home, earlier this year it acquired Education Changemakers, an Australian provider of professional learning workshops and personalised support for teachers and school leaders.

"Companies are embracing the opportunity to programmatically upskill, reskill and empower their workforces, and Go1 has emerged as the go-to provider of learning content to make that opportunity a reality,” AirTree Ventures founder Craig Blair said following the raise.

"We’re delighted to be a part of Go1’s global journey in building an enduring company at the helm of the Learning & Development ecosystem."

Madrona managing director S. Somasegar highlighted Go1's successful expansion into the US and other global markets means it not only serves global corporations, but is uniquely suited for the far flung remote workforces of the next decade. 

"Go1 has built a platform that serves the needs of both employers looking to retain and upskill their talent and employees seeking training for their professional and personal development,” Somasegar said.

These sentiments were echoed by Five Sigma founding partner Peter Mobbs, who noted digital transformation and the changing world of work had amplified the need for companies to invest in their people and 'uplevel' their capabilities.

"Go1 is uniquely suited to help companies tackle this challenge with a comprehensive solution for workplace learning content. We’re proud to have led this latest financing round," Mobbs said.

The five million-plus learners worldwide in the Go1 database have access to a wide range of content from partners including Pluralsight, EdX, Harvard Business Publishing Corporate Learning and Coursera.

"Leading organisations are recognising the acute need to future-proof their workforces by providing comprehensive learning and development opportunities," says Go1 CEO and co-founder Andrew Barnes.

"The incredible team at Go1 has made huge strides in expanding our capabilities and offerings to ensure users have access to education that supports their growth.

"These recent investments allow Go1 to build on that momentum to explore new content and resources, enabling our platform to meet the needs of every organisation and employee, and brings us closer to our goal of supporting one billion learners globally."

The group has also announced several new appointments, in addition to Go1's new president Marc Havercroft, formerly of SAP SuccessFactors.

Ashleigh Loughnan, who has held leadership roles in both startup and public companies including Wotif, has been appointed chief people officer, while other hires include: former Snapdocs marketing leader Ben Allen as chief marketing officer; chief data officer Antony Ugoni who is currently chairperson on the advisory board for the Institute of Analytics Professionals of Australia; and former Upwork VP of product Jared Goralnick as senior vice president, product management.

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