Matrix Partners India on Thursday announced it had invested an undisclosed amount in career accelerator startup Pesto. Undisclosed sources however say that the amount is close to $2 million. Others who participated in the investment round included Swiggy Founders Sriharsha Majety, Rahul Jaimini and Nandan Reddy; Innov8 Founder Ritesh Malik; Posist Founder Ashish Tulsian and Jack Yeung of OIC Capital. Pesto will use the funds to accelerate growth.
A Delhi-based career accelerator for software engineers, Pesto was founded by Ayush Jaiswal and Andrew Linfoot and offers 12-week bootcamps to make engineers Silicon Valley-ready.
Rajat Agarwal, Vice President of Matrix India, said:
"Remote work is an early trend globally driven by a shortage of high-quality local talent, rising cost of living in key technology hubs, and widespread adoption of enabling infrastructure. Pesto is on a mission to build a marketplace for quality remote talent from India and we strongly believe in their skilling led approach.”
As part of the training bootcamp, software engineers with a minimum of two years of experience are connected to mentors in the US and trained in soft-skills.
Co-founder Andrew said in a press release:
"Apart from technical skills, we teach students about cultural differences, how to be better communicators, and manage their time in a remote work environment, etc. The unique thing about Pesto is that the whole training programme is designed to create a change in mindset. By the time students graduate, they have the confidence to... participate as equals in the global tech community.”
Trainees at Pesto have to sign an income share agreement before joining the programme. In a previous conversation with YourStory , Ayush had said that once the trained engineers earn over Rs 15 lakh per annum at a full-time remote job in an international tech company, they have to pay 17 percent of their annual income as training fee for the next three years, on a monthly basis.
Pesto's hiring partners include Mimir HQ, Vaynermedia, Fossa.ai, Scale API, Embibe and Zinc.io. Ayush said:
"The world is changing faster than ever and I believe the future belongs to distributed teams with talent no longer restricted to a location. There’s a severe shortage of tech talent in parts of the world (US, Canada, Europe etc) and we believe that India has a large number of undiscovered tech talent that can fill this gap. We believe it’s an incredible opportunity.”
Starting January 2019, Pesto has started a new batch every month, and accepts students on a rolling basis. Matrix Partners India closed its Fund III with a committed capital of over $300 million earlier in January. It plans to continue investing in companies across seed, early-stage, Series A and B stages in different sectors.
Matrix India has already invested in Ola, Quikr, Practo, Dailyhunt, Treebo, Limeroad, Mswipe, Five Star Business Finance, OfBusiness, Vogo, Razorpay, ZipLoan and &Me.