South African startup LinkdPro, an on-demand digital platform that connects independent professionals with companies looking for specialist industry expertise on a project basis, has launched an extension service that allows employers to shortlist and send interview requests to finance professionals.
Launched last year after 14 months of development, LinkdPro is a niche skills marketplace of independent professionals, ranging from strategy consultants, on-demand CFOs to ex-investment bankers and industry sector experts.
At the start of this month it launched an extension service named Octopus, which offers companies immediate access to a database of top finance professionals in one place, intelligent real-time candidate statistics, and the ability to shortlist and send interview requests.
“It’s an extension of LinkdPro and is really off the back of the success we’ve had on LinkdPro,” co-founder Scelo Makhathini told Disrupt Africa.
“We found that a lot of our LinkdPr clients are asking us to get them permanent stuff, particularly finance professionals. And so Octopus was born – to solve a real business need.”
Octopus launched at the start of April and has already signed up in excess of 40 finance professionals, most of them being qualified chartered accountants.
“If extrapolated over a month this number could be bigger. As a qualified chartered accountant myself, Octopus is able to leverage off the fertile network I have developed over the years,” Makhathini said.
“The number of just registered chartered accountants in South Africa is in excess of 40,000. This is the market we are after. But remember that Octopus is not just for chartered accountants, but rather all finance professionals in South Africa.”
The recruitment platform charges a 10 per cent commission upon placement of a finance professional with a client. Octopus is already making money and has placed finance professionals with JSE-listed clients.
LinkdPro is also going great guns, according to Makhathini, with more than 500 consultants registered on the platform.
“We have since established in-principal JV arrangements with partners with extensive experience and network on the African continent. If you combine our network as LinkdPro and that of our JV partners, we are well in excess of 1,300 consultants across 46 African countries,” he said.