Startups backed by influential Israel-based equity crowdfunding group OurCrowd are looking to hire in greater numbers, despite the lingering COVID-19 pandemic.
The number of jobs listed by OurCrowd’s global portfolio companies more than doubled from 350 in June 2020 to 912 in December 2020. The number of job openings in Israel rose by 400% during the same period to more than 200. The positions were advertised by 100 of OurCrowd’s portfolio of companies and funds.
OurCrowd partner and head of business development Laly David says: “We are thrilled to see the growth and job creation taking place within our portfolio companies. Despite the lingering pandemic and fears that the economy would take a long time to recover, many of the startups backed by OurCrowd are already emerging strongly from the downturn.”
Looking forward, companies surveyed for the OurCrowd Jobs Index forecast that the job growth would continue through 2021. Most also said they expect to maintain a mix of in-person and remote working.
“We will be expanding our global team further in 2021,” says Howard Edelstein, CEO of BioCatch, a behavioral biometrics company providing fraud prevention solutions to financial services. “With almost 200 employees on board we are hiring across all departments and hope to grow to 250 employees by the end of this year.”
Demand for software engineers has grown the fastest. But demand has also increased to a lesser extent in most other areas as well. About a third of the surveyed companies said they have hired more aggressively during the pandemic than before the novel coronavirus shut down much of the global economy and sharply reduced travel.
About 23% of surveyed companies said they had hired at a slower pace since the start of the pandemic.Each day during the fourth quarter of 2020, OurCrowd companies posted an average of 14 job openings, up from 13 per day during the third quarter and 10 per day during the second quarter, when uncertainty over the pandemic and the economy was at a peak.
“Memic will continue the process of expanding its commercial team in the US, adding new employees in all segments including sales, customer support, professional education, marketing, product management, and clinical affairs,” says Dvir Cohen, CEO of Memic Innovative Surgery Ltd. “Memic will enhance its research and operational capabilities to expand targeted applications and surgical disciplines, adding software developers, artificial intelligence experts, project managers, mechanical and systems engineers.”
Even as COVID-19 vaccines are being rolled out in Israel and elsewhere, only 14.3%, of surveyed portfolio companies expect all their employees will be back in the workplace by July 1, 2021. 85.7%, expect a mix of in-person and remote work.
Though hiring has picked up, some companies indicated they were still somewhat cautious, with 52.5% of surveyed startups saying they expect ‘cautious hiring’ through 2021. Meanwhile 47.6% said they plan ‘aggressive hiring’ through 2021.