Transfr Closes $40 Million in Series C Growth Funding to Enable Career Mobility for Undiscovered Talent Through Its Virtual Reality Platform
Transfr, an emerging leader in virtual reality-based skills training for middle-skilled careers, announced a $40 million investment . The Series C growth capital investment round was led by ABS Capital to further develop Transfr’s virtual reality (VR) simulation and training platform and to expand its programs to accommodate its rapidly growing customer base, which has more than doubled year over year from 2019-2023. JPMorgan Chase Impact Finance and Advisory joined the Series C round along with existing investors: Lumos Capital Group, who led the Series B; Akkadian Ventures, Spring Tide Capital, and Firework Ventures, who led the Series A; and Album, who led the Series Seed. This round brings the total investment in Transfr to over $90 million since its founding in 2017.
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“We believe that Transfr and its experienced management team are uniquely positioned to capitalize on the tailwind from the challenges in the labor market by providing innovative training solutions that can efficiently bring qualified candidates to market.”
Middle-skills careers are defined as jobs that require more training and education than a high school diploma but less than a four-year college degree and are considered the backbone of America’s workforce. This category makes up more than half of the U.S. labor market, while only 43 percent of the labor force has the training required to fill these roles. The lack of training currently available to those looking to fill these jobs presents an opportunity for the private and public sectors to invest in solutions that make it easier to close the skill gap.
“About two-thirds of the American workforce do not have a college degree.1 There is a massive opportunity for both private and public entities to utilize VR training programs to create alternative pathways to employment,” said Bharani Rajakumar, Transfr founder and CEO, and Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist. “This $40 million investment enables Transfr to continue to invest in undiscovered talent by developing more simulations and solutions to connect the classroom to career pathway with our partners in education and industry and hire the talent we need to scale and achieve our mission.”
Transfr’s mission is to scale access to quality education and employment for everyone, regardless of their background or location. The company developed an innovative VR-based platform, which hosts over 300 simulations that focus on careers that do not require a four-year degree. It has established a first-mover advantage in the Career Training and Education (CTE) market, with VR simulation training seeing $263 billion in global spending annually with an opportunity for rapid growth.
Transfr is now deployed in over 1,000 locations nationwide, including community colleges, trade schools, employers, prisons, and K-12 schools across Automotive, Aviation, Construction, Diesel, Electrical, Hospitality and Tourism, Manufacturing, and Healthcare. With this diverse industry set, Transfr has increased its user base by 10x over the last year, with trainees having completed over 400,000 simulations, helping incumbent workers, job-seekers, and students leverage the company’s virtual reality platform to build the skills needed to excel in middle-skills careers.
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ABS Capital Partners Phil Clough will join Transfr’s board of directors, and Jennifer Krusius, also a Partner at ABS Capital, will serve as a board observer. Clough says, “We believe that Transfr and its experienced management team are uniquely positioned to capitalize on the tailwind from the challenges in the labor market by providing innovative training solutions that can efficiently bring qualified candidates to market.”
Krusius added, “Transfr’s VR platform offers a cost-effective alternative in the educational landscape that can reach many workforce candidates that otherwise would not have had access to this level of training and coaching.”
Transfr plans to leverage the capital investment to further build out its executive leadership team and scale its platform and impact, enabling more people to explore, learn, and connect with career opportunities in high-growth sectors such as manufacturing, skilled trades, and healthcare. The funding will also be used to invest in developing new training simulations that cover a wider range of skills and scenarios, as well as to enhance existing ones with more features, including offering training in Spanish.
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