New-age companies look beyond India for senior talent as they ramp up hiring

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Bengaluru: As new-age companies, flush with capital, continue to ramp up hiring, many of them are looking beyond India for senior talent.

Headhunters say the drivers for this hiring is expansion into new geographies, especially for companies with a strong product-market fit, as well as a hunt for more developed skills in emerging technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. Hiring is happening primarily for roles in technology, product, design and data science where there is a talent crunch in the Indian market.

Edtech firm Classplus is looking for mid to senior leaders in blockchain, a technology that is still nascent in India. The firm is also looking to Eastern Europe for senior product design talent, and is hiring entry to senior-level engineering talent for its newly opened Abu Dhabi office, said Mukul Rustagi, cofounder.

Livspace, which entered the unicorn club earlier this week with a valuation of over a billion dollars, is looking for senior talent that can drive its expansion into new markets like Southeast Asia, Australia and Saudi Arabia.

Ashish Sanganeria, senior partner at executive search firm Transearch, said in the last year there has been a 30-40% jump in mandates from startups looking for global talent.

“Compensation at startups has gone through the roof, and many can afford to pay upwards of Rs 3 crore to bring people in from abroad,” he said. Among those looking at such talent are startups which are growing their international footprint as well as SaaS startups which get a big chunk of their revenues from markets such as the US.

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Executive search firm Catenon is also seeing more international searches this year than last year. There is a rise in mandates from fintech and edtech companies looking to expand in the US, Southeast Asia and Middle East markets, said Gaurav Chattur, managing director – Asia Pacific, Catenon.

At fintech startup Clear (formerly ClearTax), the hunt is on for talent to drive go-to-market strategy, design, and marketing, and the company is looking at hiring senior leaders in the Middle East, Western Europe and the US.

“India’s startup story has seen sharp growth over the past year, and companies that are building global products need to tap into global talent that understands the requirements of the international market,” cofounder Archit Gupta told ET.

upGrad is expanding internationally across geographies including Asia Pacific; Europe, Middle East and Africa; and the US, and is ramping up its support and business teams to continue meeting strong demand.

Meesho is also increasing hiring in technology, engineering, product management and categories from Silicon Valley and Europe. The growing trend of talent across the globe joining the Indian startup ecosystem has helped scale up global hiring this year, said Ashish Singh, chief HR officer at the social e-commerce firm.

Professional networking firm Apna is looking to recruit more senior executives globally in technology, product, and data teams.

“Our mission of empowering a billion lives and creating a social impact has been attracting top talent from across the globe, including the US and UK,” said Manas Singh, chief business officer, Apna.

Earlier this week, 3SC – a supply chain solutions provider for the shipping and logistics industries – appointed Anna Shaposhnikova as vice-president of analytics, Europe. The Gurgaon-based tech company is looking for new talent to expand its footprint globally.

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