Two years after, among others, Participatiemaatschappij Vlaanderen (PMV) and HR entrepreneur Conny Vandendriessche invested 1 million euros in TechWolf in Ghent, the HR-tech company is raising ten times that amount from Stride, the Belgian tech investor Fred Destin’s London investment fund.
TechWolf, the start-up of the young Ghent entrepreneurs Andreas De Neve (CEO), Jeroen Van Hautte and Mikaël Wornoo, has developed a technology for so-called skill mapping. This makes it possible to make an X-ray of each employee in a company of his knowledge and abilities. This releases artificial intelligence on the many data tracks that each employee leaves behind throughout his or her career: the training, experiences, evaluations and feedback followed, but also the presentations and reports he or she has ever prepared or projects where he or she or she has participated. The technology fits into a broader tendency to increasingly use big data and algorithms to manage the HR department.
TechWolf is now raising 10 million euros from Stride, London’s investment fund around Belgian Fred Destin. The only other Belgian company that Stride still invests in is Accountable (accounting software). TechWolf will use the money to expand its sales force. The Ghent company has 25 employees, and by the end of the year many more will be added.
- Start-up specializes in mapping employees’ competencies and experiences.
- Founded in 2018 by Andreas De Neve (CEO), Jeroen Van Hautte and Mikaël Wornoo.
- Sales and profits are not disclosed.
- Customers: KBC, Telenet SD Worx, GE Healthcare, HSBC, among others.
- Raises 10 million euros from, among others, Stride, the Belgian Fred Destin’s London fund.
In 2020, two years after the foundation, the entrepreneurs already raised 1 million euros from, among others, the Flemish investment company PMV, HR entrepreneur Conny Vandendriessche (House of HR) and a few people from the vicinity of the Ghent start-up Showpad. Now the American Acadian Ventures and Fortino have been added.
The software and algorithms developed by TechWolf integrate all data about employees in one place. Companies can instantly see what competencies are available, in which departments or departments they are located, and how they have evolved over the years. The HR policy can be tailored to this, for the entire company, for a department and at the level of each individual employee.
HR is becoming increasingly important in companies, as a result of people analytics being given a place and a budget, and the HR manager moving more towards the executive committee.
‘At Telenet, about a hundred people work with an old system to monitor customer service. It will soon be replaced, “says De Neve. ‘What will Telenet do with those people once the new system has been installed? Discard and hire so many new people? No, Telenet wants to know what these people know and can do, to see how they can use them in other projects and functions. This saves a lot of money on layoffs and hiring premiums and also prevents personal suffering.
‘It used to be simple: companies bought raw materials, put them in a machine, and the product came out,’ explains De Neve. “But as our economy is more and more service-based, the only assets are people. So very complex. Then you notice that HR is becoming increasingly important in companies, so people analytics get space and budget and the HR manager moves more towards the business committee. But it also means that the HR manager, like the marketing manager in the past, must be able to defend his budget and efforts much better with numbers. People analytics is important for that. ‘
TechWolf has about twenty national and international companies as customers, ten of which have grown out of the pilot project phase. The list includes Cegeka, Telenet, Danmarks Nationalbank, Orange, KBC, SD Worx and Bpost. Pilot projects are underway abroad at the mega bank HSBC, the major oil company BP and General Electric Healthcare. De Neve prefers not to disclose turnover figures. ‘Currently we collect more than 100,000 euros a year from some Belgian customers. Before the end of 2024, we would like to go on contracts of 1 million euros a year with some of the big boys. ‘