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Female-Founded Diversity Platform Secures US$200k Pre-Seed Investment


December 2020, Singapore

An idea that sparked from the global problem of a lack of inclusion faced by under-represented groups in the workplace has closed its first funding round, in spite of current financial uncertainty and just four months after official incorporation in Singapore.


With the intention to remove bias through tech from the entire hiring process, is the brainchild of its CEO Helen McGuire (former founder of women’s careers platform Hopscotch. work) and Diversely’s Chief Product Officer, Hayley Bakker (founder of tech off-shoring company, Colibri Growth) - a duo that has over 25 years’ combined experience in D&I, Tech, HR, and Comms.  


Having met through their previous businesses, the two women are setting their minds on the creation of an end to end HR Tech platform and its associated AI-driven tools.





The D&I (Diversity & Inclusion) market has seen 100% growth year on year, with demand for D&I professionals increasing at a similar rate, according to a Glassdoor report for 2020.  However, Diversely’s research amongst its clients shows that although 85% want to improve workplace diversity and 65% are spending time and money on doing so, just a fifth are seeing any kind of tangible results with only one in ten able to measure the impact on their business. Diversely aims to change this reality for businesses globally, starting in key ASEAN hubs.


McGuire expanded on the ambition of the company; “Our frustration around the lack of impactful, globally scale-able solutions that drive to the heart of workplace diversity has been our inspiration.  Despite a global pandemic, we have now raised US$200k from eight international Angel Investors to build an affordable, accessible means for businesses everywhere to automate, manage, track and improve their workplace diversity through hiring tools, analytics, and just-in-time training.”

CPO Hayley Bakker adds; “With this investment, we’ve already started work on our product having hired our tech team in Vietnam. Our first priority is the build of our Job Description Analyser, which uses scientific research from our partners at The University of Nottingham to recognize, reduce and replace biased-language in job descriptions in order to reach broader demographics and attract under-represented groups. But that is just the beginning of our vision.” 


Rob Bryson, founder of WeNetwork and ex MD of Robert Walters Singapore commented on behalf of the investors: “We are all looking forward to supporting Helen, Hayley, and the team at Diversely to affect real change in the quest for Diversity and Inclusion.  Throughout my career, I have seen this topic much debated but with limited progress.  In these rapidly changing times, it is even more important to reach out to all and give everyone a fair chance, we all have an obligation to ensure no one is left behind and I think Diversely is building a very exciting platform to help achieve this ambitious aim.”


“With key clients already using and beta testing our solution, international training partner, PCA, onboard, and a Global Advisory Group to support us,” continues McGuire, “we are building a platform that can replace and improve many out-dated HR Tech tools.  We are working with some of the smartest minds in the business and aim to be global by 2023.”.


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