Founded in 2018 by serial Aussie entrepreneur Ryan Trainor along with his brother Lincoln Trainer and co-founders Victor Rajeevan and Richard Uren, the Adventus platform is a SaaS-based college student recruitment marketplace.
The company claims to have attracted more than 2000 universities globally to the platform and has recently raised an additional $11 million, led by venture capital firm Our Innovation Fund (OIF), to close a $22.7 million Series A.
Currently, Adventus operates in 12 countries and is planning expansion in 30 countries, along with nearly doubling the company's headcount from 245 to 400 and the number of recruiters on the platform from 2700 to 6000 at the end of the year. The company said the funds raised would be used to strengthen the global presence of edtech startup, particularly in the U.S. "Our goal is to grow five times faster than in 2021, processing up to 25,000 student applications in a market of 5 million international students." declared co-founder Ryan Trainor.
Series A round was also supported by local company 333 Capital as the principal investor, alongside NCN Investments and Kin Group USA.
This online market operates a B2B SaaS model linking recruiters and higher education institutions to students in an era when the global pandemic has wreaked havoc in traditional Uni recruitment.
"Universities have recognized the value of Adventus.io through COVID-19 as they have not been able to travel and physically contact student recruitment officers. At the same time, universities are broadly looking for greater diversity in the nationalities of student cohorts," said Ryan Trainor.
"We have democratized access globally so students can make informed decisions and enrol in university based on their needs and ambitions."
He added, "choosing where to study was a $100,000 and one of the largest purchasing decision people make, with around 70% of students using a recruiter who, on average, only has partnerships with around 30 universities."
Adventus gives them options worldwide, with the platform acting as a neutral exchange, charging a subscription fee to the institutions and recruiters, and passing on the placement fee in full. The company adds an estimated 60 recruiters per week to the platform.
Trainor said, "Adventus makes the student recruiter the hero by giving them all the tools and technology they need to recommend courses and institutions that best meet the student's requirements."
"Ultimately whom we're serving is the students, because it's about how do you give an undergraduate, who's sitting with a recruiter, the ability to democratize access to inventory and courses, all around the world, and then give them the confidence that they're getting the right option to go to the right university," he added.
This Uni student recruitment market place is also a data play, offering the sector hitherto unseen insights into emerging trends in education in real-time and ensuring the quality of student applications.
The beauty of bringing technology to the industry lies in data as well. We've set ourselves up as a trusted conduit between the institution and recruiters," Trainor said.
"Ultimately, we are a data business. There has never been an optic around data in those areas because it's so fragmented. There has been no analysis or data to assist institutions in better understanding recruitment. So it's quite interesting, even from a government point of view. We now have live market data from students from around the world as they make decisions, profile students and all that information that has never been consulted before."
Adventus seeks to build a processing centre in India and set foot on the ground in companies that are already active.
Ryan Trainor said the company's goal is to become the default exchange for industry, placing as many as 100,000 students in universities each year by 2025.
Also, OIF founding partner Jerry Steel said, "his V.C. firm was impressed by how the Adventus team scaled to 200-plus people within a short span of 12 months of formally launching."
"The product definitely resonates with students and universities, especially in the U.S., which excites us," he added.
"We have a strong history of supporting business expansion in the U.S. and connecting customers and investors through our extensive U.S. network. By leading this cycle, we are striving to be a full and value-added partner to the Adventus.io team to accelerate its growth quickly as we advance."
He also added, "Foreign students typically contribute 30 to 40 per cent of a university's income."
As per a resource, in the previous round of funding, Adventus secured $12 million in seed and Series A while advancing its SaaS platform intending to help its international students find the right university that caters for their requirement. The funding came from 333 Capital, which also included investment from the founders themselves.