AG5 raises €6 million from Headline, Peak to save the manufacturing industry from Excel
Amsterdam, 14 March 2023 – AG5, the SaaS platform used to map and track employees’ skills and qualifications, has raised €6 million in a new round of investment. Last year, the company received €1.2 million from tech investor Peak. Since then, AG5 has grown exponentially, and its annual revenue has tripled. Now, together with SaaS experts Headline and Acadian Ventures, Peak is investing in AG5 once more.
AG5’s SaaS solution offers the first interface organizations can use to map and track employees’ skills that is directly linked to production lines. It delivers scalable capacity planning and insights for audits and training programs to industries that still rely on Excel, or pen and paper. AG5’s plug-and-play software solution simplifies skills management with intuitive, appealing, and sharable skill matrices. AG5’s clients report an 80% reduction in audit preparation times and 15% savings on employee training budgets.
With offices in Amsterdam and Berlin, and a workforce of 31 employees, AG5 addresses a global market potentially worth €28 billion. The new investment will therefore be used to further internationalize the platform, starting in Europe’s manufacturing powerhouse, Germany. Over the next two years, the company aspires to double the size of its team, triple its client base, and become the European market leader in skills management.
Say goodbye to Excel spreadsheets
In manufacturing, skills are often associated with specific pieces of equipment. It is then determined whether employees know how and possess the right qualifications to operate them.
Odds are, however, that these skills and qualifications are still being tracked and managed using overly complex Excel spreadsheets. These are often not kept up to date, with multiple versions floating around an organization and only a few individuals knowing how to fix formulas when they stop working.
Neglecting to map essential skills of front-line workers properly and in a timely manner will result in myriad problems on production floors. It can lead to reduced productivity, safety violations, and a lack of insight into valuable information that is necessary for audits.
76% of manufacturers struggle to find workers with the right skills
A shortage of qualified staff is increasing year after year as a result of rapid technological developments, increased turnover, and an aging workforce. A 2022 ManpowerGroup survey, for example, shows that 76% of manufacturing employers report difficulties finding the required skills.
The problem is so severe that the European Commission has named 2023 the European Year of Skills, marked by an investment of €85 billion into the development of digital skills on the production floors.
To navigate this challenge, international organizations such as Jacobs Douwe Egberts, Air France-KLM, Tata Steel, and Toyota Boshoku are using AG5 to map and track their employees’ skills. AG5’s platform targets factories with 200 to 40,000+ employees, is available in 14 languages, and offers technical integrations with HRM and e-learning platforms, planning systems, and training management systems, including SAP (as a certified partner), Moodle and Cornerstone.
AG5 was founded in 2019 by brothers Rick and Mathieu van Echtelt, and Wouter Gazendam. The platform enables organizations to identify, visualize, and close skills gaps – without the use of complicated and inconvenient spreadsheets. Its intuitive, audit-proof dashboards provide organizations with clear, simple oversight of their employees’ skills and qualifications, making skills management easier than ever.
Headline is a VC firm actively on the ground in seven cities around the world. It invests across geographies, leading rounds at every stage. The firm’s Early Stage Funds are based in the US, Europe, Asia, and Brazil, and invest locally. Its San Francisco-based Growth Fund invests globally from Series B and beyond, working in collaboration with its early-stage teams. Sonos, The RealReal, Creditas, Sorare, Pismo, AppFolio, goPuff, Acorns, Farfetch, Segment, Bumble, and Yeahka are among the 450+ investments that Headline has performed globally.
Peak is a seed-stage venture capital fund investing across Europe from its offices in Amsterdam, Berlin, and Stockholm. For the past 15 years, Peak has specialized in SaaS, marketplaces, and platforms. Its investors include their active portfolio founders and other European entrepreneurs and operators. Allocated over five funds, Peak has invested in over 50 companies like Catawiki, Hygraph, StuDocu, Circula, Channable, Trengo, Breyta, Creative Fabrica, and Blidz.
About Acadian Ventures
Acadian Ventures is an early-stage venture capital firm based in the USA and Germany. We help founders around the world build enduring companies that make work better, fairer, more meaningful, and ultimately more productive. Founded in 2019, we invest in companies that are leading the work revolution and reimagining how people work in the future. Acadian has invested in over 25 companies, including Nomi Heath, Smartrecruiters, OysterHR, Figures, Arist, Fifty, Figures, Techwolf and Workpay.