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TextKernel Catches a Whopper!

Chad is too busy building his Portuguese real estate empire, we've brought on industry Brainfooder Hung Lee to the show to join Cheese and Lieven in tackling the continent's biggest stories. First, we're talking about the acquisition of Sovren by Dutch-based Textkernel. Then, we tackle the latest funding round by Jobandtalent, a company now valued at over $3 billion. Want some buy-or-sell, European-style? The boys cover Quinyx, Screenloop and Blink - no, not Blink182 - and whether or not they'd be buyers or sellers. Then a Dutch pizza company promised to send an employee to space. Is it just good PR or a sound strategy to recruit and retain the best and brightest? Gotta listen to find out.


Chad and Cheese Podcast Does Europe INTRO (5s):

Some podcasts, do it for the fun. Some do it for the fame, Chad and Cheese they do it for global effin domination. That's why bringing America to its knees was just the beginning. Now they have their eyes set on conquering Europe and they've drafted industry veteran Lieven Van Nieuwenhuyze of Belgium to help them navigate the old country and bring HR's most dangerous podcast across the pond to trash-talk like never before. Not safe for work in any language. The Chad and Cheese podcast does Europe.

Joel (38s):

Oh yeah. The Omicron variant is ravaging Europe. The same month Chad is touring the continent coincidence I'll let you be the judge. You are listening to the Chad and Cheese Podcast Does Europe, everybody. This time sans Chad, who's busy building his Portuguese real estate empire. I'm your cohost Joel "variant of concern" Cheeseman. And I'm

Lieven (1m 1s):

I'm still just Lieven Van Nieuwenhuyze.

Joel (1m 3s):

Good enough. On this episode, Tex Colonel scoops up an American competitor, job and talent lands a $500 million investment, and a little game of buy or sell, and don't forget our mystery guests coming up. Let's do this. All right, everybody. I'm going to give you a little hint to our, our mystery guest. Ready? Here we go. Let's start with a little mood music then,

sfx (1m 27s):

What are you doing step-bro?

Joel (1m 30s):

Or you know, that sound means there's porn in the house. What's up, everybody. I want to welcome our favorite industry porn star Hung Lee to the show. He has no B game. Welcome Hung.

Hung (1m 43s):

What an entrance. THungk you for that. THungk you for that intro Joel. I really appreciate it. It helps my credibility and massively.

Joel (1m 53s):

So polite, such a Brit, such a Brit. So most of our listeners will know you as the recruiting brain food guy. Talk a little bit about that and anything else you think our listeners should know about you real quick.

Hung (2m 6s):

Okay, cool. So basically that's it. I mean, I write a newsletter every week called the Recruiting Brain Food. You should subscribe to it. And I do a bunch of other stuff around that, including, you know, live streams, videos, podcasts, et cetera, just basically talking to industry people and then supporting the ecosystem as best I can.

Joel (2m 28s):

And you regularly highlight the Chad and Cheese podcast. So we really appreciate that. Lieven how are you doing, man?

Lieven (2m 38s):

I'm fine. I'm fine. I'm feeling a bit omicron today, but nothing more. So I guess it's not a real difference.

Joel (2m 45s):

Give us, American's a bit of flavor of what it's like in Europe right now with Omicron.

Lieven (2m 50s):

We had to postpone the best festival was not the best Congress in the world. So we don't like Omicron, but it's getting better. It's getting better.

Joel (2m 60s):

Yeah. That was some bullshit. How about in the UL Hung?

Hung (3m 2s):

Okay. I think the UK has a slightly different approach. Whenever I speak to like our mainland European friends that have come over, they're usually quite surprised at how generally lax things are over here. But yeah, I think we'll probably get a few more days worth of going out before we all voluntarily kind of shut things down and move into the Christmas spirit, you know?

Joel (3m 28s):

You're saying I can still get a pint in Britain.

Hung (3m 30s):

Yeah. A hundred percent. You can walk in and get a pint, no worries.

Joel (3m 33s):

Life is good. All right, let's get some quick shout outs. My shout-out in this episode goes out to Austrian brothels. That's right. A brothel in Austria is offering free vouchers to adults who get their COVID-19 vaccine at the building. Fun palace, which is what it's called, I'm guessing that's Fun Palace in Austrian is located in the capital city of Vienna is hoping to boost vaccination rates as well as client numbers that have dropped during the pandemic. I'm sure they have dropped. Visitors will be entitled to a free 30 minute session and a quote "Sonic club"

Joel (4m 13s):

end quote with the lady of their choice if they get their shot. Austria has one of the worst vaccine uptakes in Western Europe. No word yet on how much the freebies are impacting vaccination rates, but I'm guessing they're moving the needle a little bit to the positive side if they're Hungding out freebies. Have you guys been to Austria recently?

Hung (4m 38s):

Not recently. Three years since I was last in Vienna so I am certainly overdue, although that's nothing to do with that new story.

Joel (4m 49s):

Nice. Lieven, do you have any shout outs? Anything you want to let the listeners know about before we get into news.

Lieven (4m 53s):

Okay, we have a shutout to the recruitment Congress, which was the Congress House of HR, which are organizers, so which should have been it's November 25th, but we had to postpone it because of Omicron. And now we have a new date. So does the shout out to the new date is May 6th, 2022. If there is no dollar Sigma or whatever, the events, it will be May 6th.

Joel (5m 18s):

Yeah. Which I'm sure it's equally nice to be in Europe, in May, as it is in November.

Lieven (5m 23s):

It's a much better, much better.

Joel (5m 25s):

Better, much better, much better. Yeah. I need a quick pity party. I, after being cooped up in my house, I was supposed to go to HR tech in Vegas, back in the fall, and my wife had an emergency appendectomy, so I didn't get to go. And then I was really excited to get out of the house to go to Europe and then this thing gets canceled. So I'm hoping that 2022 travel actually happens again. Hung, do you have any shout outs for the listeners?

Hung (5m 55s):

I do. I do. I have two sports shout outs this week because two exciting and remarkable things happened to two teams I support. So quick shout out to New Castle United football club who secured their first win of the entire season this week. They're still bottom of the league of course, however, three wins, three points is three points. So now joy bottom, which is fantastic and their hope is in the air. And shout out also too at the Detroit Lions, of course, in the NFL, similarly winless until last Sunday, they pulled it off.

Hung (6m 36s):

And, and that gives me hope. You know, it gives me hope that these horrendous units of organization can pull it together and turn it around and, you know, give the fans a glimmer of some things. So, yeah.

Joel (6m 50s):

So this is interesting. So I'm going to come at this from an American perspective. We have two or three games a year that, that happened in London. Usually I think Wembley stadium, the teams come in and the stadium is always packed and I tend to default to, oh, that's just Americans over in Europe that want to go see a football game. Now, are you just being nice because you're on our podcast or do you actually keep track of American football? And what is your sense of the English acceptance of the sport?

Hung (7m 21s):

I'm basically an outlier in the sense that I am a fan of the NFL. So I have followed the NFL for a very long time. So since that's true for, I even played it at a really basic level when I was a kid, cause there was a massive surge of interest in where you guys would call football, over here at around the time when I could play. But the reason why it's packed out is because of genuine fans. There's enough fans, basically in England, certainly to basically make the journey to go to an event, pay a hundred pounds or whatever it is, ridiculous amount of money.

Hung (8m 2s):

I think it's a big number these days and sit there for three and a half hours to watch these guys play. So, I think it's a genuine fan interest. I think that, you know, you're gonna get 50-60,000 people to watch these things, whether you get it every week, I don't know because it's still like what three or four times, isn't it. So it's, it's still like a big event, but I think that yeah, club will do well over in the UK.

Joel (8m 31s):

You're all for a London-based American football team.

Hung (8m 34s):

I would not say so now I wouldn't say so. I think the reason why the fans are interested is because there's the fans of the teams in the U S you know, there are fans of the Miami Dolphins, fans of the Chicago Bears, et cetera. So I think if you tried to create a London team, we'll they, switch allegiance, I don't think that's that clear that they would do that.

Joel (8m 57s):

Yeah. I guess if, if, I guess if we just added an English, premier football team, there wouldn't be a whole lot of fans in the UK.

Hung (9m 5s):

Right. Let's see. I mean, the MLS is a good example, right? Let's say there was an MLS team over in UK, in England. Would there be any fans, either side of the Atlantic watching that? Probably not. So I think there's already fan loyalty laid down to US-based teams at the moment. So yeah, whether they do it or not on, I don't know, but it seems like the NFL makes easy money by sending a few teams every year, doing it this way. So I wonder what the value would be to actually create a local team.

Joel (9m 40s):

Yeah. How's, how's the NFL in Belgium is there, they have games of American football over there Lieven.

Lieven (9m 44s):

I don't think I've ever seen a game, but I'm sure by watching those American movies, that I would have been a great quarterback.

Joel (9m 56s):

And I'm going to say probably, probably not so much. All right, gang, let's get into some shit that listeners might actually care about in the news recently, Textkernel buys Sovren. Well Santa came a little early for one of our long-time sponsors. The Dutch based Textkernel has announced that it has acquired Soveren a long time sponsor of this show. So ho-ho to those folks, the combination of both companies will create a stronger player in the AI based search and match technology space, and Textkernel strengthens its north American and APAC footprint with the acquisition. Following in the deal Textkernel will serve over 2,500 clients, including some of the largest staffing firms in the world, working from offices in the Netherlands, US, France and Germany.

Joel (10m 46s):

Financial details of the track transaction were not disclosed, however, according to a market source cited by Reuters, the deal is valued at 30 to 40 million euros. Tex Colonel is backed by Main Capital, which bought the company from CareerBuilder back in 2020. Textkernel employs about 150 people that's according to LinkedIn. So I know from a US-based perspective, certainly Soveren has been a major player in this space for a long time. Textkernel on your side of the pond, you probably have a little different perspective. Let's start with Lieven, Lieven any commentary around this deal, what it means to resume parsers over in Europe, global perspective, anything on the deal that you found interesting.

Lieven (11m 35s):

Well, first of all, congratulations to Soveren for getting the money. And I heard about Soveren for a first time in this podcast, I'm sure the buying people from Textkernel also did. So I sold tHungks to you, Joel, that

Joel (11m 49s):

We're getting no piece of the deal by the way, just so you know.

Lieven (11m 54s):

That's a mistake.

Joel (11m 56s):

That's a mistake.

Lieven (11m 58s):

Well, maybe it'll get, they give you something maybe, but I think it's a good idea. You know, if they want to do something across the pond, as you call it and the U S then they should buy a decent company. It's almost impossible to start your own company, I guess, being European. So if they want to be something in the U S it's a start and Textkernel was a big name, we don't work with them. We work with Matchbox, which is a more funny kind of name I feel.

Joel (12m 28s):

Did you say magic box?

Lieven (12m 29s):

Not matchbox.

Joel (12m 27s):

Magic box was a movie Hung was in a couple of years ago. Anyway, matchbox got it.

Lieven (12m 31s):

And also a fish called Swallow.

Hung (12m 39s):

It wasn't. Goodness me. How did you know my film backs the backlog, man? I mean, I thought I'd stripped that from the internet.

Joel (12m 49s):

Hung do you have any opinion on the deal?

Hung (12m 53s):

Not a huge amount of commentary other tHung, you know, the fact that basically resumes are just massively resilient and they've been fueling recruitment for the last, you know, several hundred years, let's say certainly within the modern understanding of the document, at least the last 50 years. And, yeah, there's a long way to go on the old all school stuff. So yeah, technology like this, I think is proof of it.

Joel (13m 16s):

Yeah. You know, if I had to make, I guess, a job board comparison for listeners, to me, this is a little bit like Indeed and Glassdoor joining forces. I think this deal makes Textkernal the 800 pound gorilla of resume parsing and potentially matching as well, going forward. This gives it really great reach globally, which I don't think many of the competitors Rchilli is one that I could think of that maybe moves into the B player player spot. I mean, too many times in our industry deals are, you know, square pegs in round holes and they don't really fit. And you kinda have to do some mental, you know, limbo to try to figure out why deals were made.

Joel (13m 57s):

Sometimes it's just clearance rack, you know, deals. But this one to me may made a lot of sense. These are two pieces that fit really well together. The whisper number out of Reuters, 30 to 40 million pounds feels low to me, but I also know that Soveren, I believe was entirely bootstrapped. So they don't have the politics to play when you have investors and capital that comes in, in any big way. So, so that, wasn't part of that as well. Do you guys agree that, that Rchilli sort of moves into the B spot or the number two player, the Pepsi in this game? Or do you think Matchbox or another player might come in and take that number two spot?

Hung (14m 40s):

Not a huge amount. I mean, I'm not using any of these technologies myself, so it's hard for me to kind of comment on it in terms of my own like user experience of it. So I don't think I've got a huge amount say in terms of the, you know, who the second player might be after this marriage,

Joel (15m 2s):

I'm guessing you have maybe a comment or an opinion on this at resumes tend to be moving more and more into video, whether that's social media or whether that's, you know, video interviewing and, or maybe an automated situation with a, with a chat bot. How does, how does resume parsing adapt if at all, to more of a video formatted resume? Like, to me that seems like a major threat to the business. Do you guys agree with that? Or do you think there'll be able to evolve or are video resumes, total bullshit, which I'm totally down to hear that argument because there's a good one to make there?

Hung (15m 40s):

I think they're two separate things, man. I mean, a video resume there's like so many companies have tried to do it, but the reality of it is it's a video is too hard to process at scale, whether that's through a technology or a parser or through human parser, you know, you can't sit through this thing. So I think video is like super useful in recruiting, but they tend to be more valuable when it's custom made or for particular purpose rather tHung a resume, which is usually a generic document that you just float out there. So I think the text-based resume is still the default. I don't see it ever going away from text.

Hung (16m 22s):

And, like I said, at the start of the segment Joel, the health of these companies, I think is a signal of the resilience of that basic text-based format of these types of documents.

Joel (16m 37s):

I'd say if anything, being able to sort of digest the text resume and making it standardized is a really big challenge, which I think is probably why there are so few players. I mean, there's just the fact that I know LinkedIn, doesn't like to have it's data, you know, pulled from the web and that they're constantly playing whack-a-mole with how they format, you know, their profiles and cHungging that. And trying to always be one step ahead of people that are grabbing resume data from their site. I know that this is a really big challenge, which I think makes the service really valuable. But I know that if you believe LinkedIn is the future and having profiles and resumes, which I tend to agree with you, then these companies will continue to be really valuable.

Joel (17m 23s):


Lieven (17m 23s):

Yeah. Well, I agree with Hung. I mean, video is really important and it will only gain importance, but it's just a hassle for a recruiter to watch videos. I mean, if you have to, if you have 50 people applying for a job, you have to watch 50 movies, it will just turn your mad. So just browsing our true, true 50 resumes printed ones. Or of course, digital ones that will go fast. And then in the end, you can, if you have five candidates, you can watch the videos to see if one of them jumps out. But I don't think video will ever just completely, how do you say it obliterate the CVs?

Lieven (18m 6s):

It's hardly possible. I think not for mass recruitment.

Joel (18m 8s):

Or some automation tools that we'll disagree with you and hope to solve that problem. Well, let's get to another news item, some pretty big cash flowing into a company called Job and Talent, which I think is a horrible name, but that's beside the point, I guess the Madrid Spain based temporary staffing platform announced recently it has secured a $500 million series E round. The money gives Job and Talent evaluation of $2.35 billion. The company says that it has an annual revenue run rate of more tHung 1 billion euros, which would place it among the top 40 staffing firms in the world.

Joel (18m 50s):

The company says funding will be used to accelerate the company's expansion into key markets, including the United States, more tHung 1300 companies, including DHL, FedEx, and eBay use the service, which currently operates in nine markets. The most popular jobs being posted for the platform include van and food delivery drivers and warehouse operators. Job and Talent has raised a total of $1.1 billion. That's according to Crunchbase and employs, just north of a thousand people, according to LinkedIn guys, what can you tell me aboutJob and Talent and what odds do you give them to find success in the United States?

Hung (19m 32s):

Yeah, I'm firstly, I love the name, Job and Talent. Well done branding team.

Joel (19m 36s):


Hung (19m 36s):

I do. I think they're great. I mean, you don't forget it, right?

Joel (19m 40s):

Can you imagine a salesperson saying, hi, I'm Joel from Job and Talent. I'd like to tell you about our company. Anyway, agree to disagree.

Hung (19m 48s):

I think that it works, but also, you know, credit to them again. I think I like the fact that this company knows what kind of business it is, you know, it is a staffing firm. It does focus on, you know, at the temporary workforce and it's got the right kind of technology wrapper around the service. You know, I think a lot of when you're looking at a kind of a next generation staffing supplier, what does it look like? It looks a lot more like a Job and Talent provider tHung it would do see, you know, our manpower let's say.

Hung (20m 28s):

So I think they are a new evolutionary step for a business of this type, not a revolutionary step, but you know what? Evolutions tend to be better tHung revolutions in many cases. So well done on them. Look forward to see what they do. It looks like all this money is going to be U S expansion base. So you can expect to see a lot of those sales guys based out of the US in 2022.

Joel (20m 50s):

So we talk a lot on the show about companies and other parts of the world that attempt to come to the U S and largely don't make it. It sounds like you're giving these guys a fighter's cHungce to make some impact in the United States.

Hung (21m 4s):

They just need US sales guys. I mean, the companies that don't make it, the ones that stay out of the U S and try and sell across, and that's just not a possibility. So, you know, I think the investors understand that and, you know, that's the reason why they put the money down, hire a bunch of salespeople. And I think your good to go.

Joel (21m 26s):

And cHungge the name. Lieven any opinion on this?

Lieven (21m 29s):

The most interesting parts to me once that BlackRock has investing 75 million and then it switches total peanuts for BlackRock, but still it's good for me to see that they are interested in our business, in our industry. And those are the really, really big players. I mean, according to Wikipedia, they have 9.5 trillion in assets. So $75 million is a pocket cHungge, but still it's good to have them looking into what we are doing.

Joel (21m 57s):

Yep. Give me a sense as an American, sort of the staffing business in Europe. My sense is you, have, mentioned manpower Hung. I mean, companies that been around for a really long time have relationships have brand awareness. And then these guys come along to sort of penetrate and take away that market share, like, give me a perspective of the staffing business in Europe and how realistic it really is that Job and Talent can put a dent in the market share of companies like Manpower.

Hung (22m 27s):

I think that ultimately, when you're in this market, which is, you know, as I understand it is high volume, it's temporary staffing. A great deal of it is about your branding, because it's very difficult to differentiate who and what you are to the competitors that we mentioned before. So, you know, we've seen some super resilient, mature players, you know, who are dominant in this space. And, you know, they're the companies that deal with enterprise wide customers. They're the kind of businesses where you have an employer or a client that is a multi-site multinational type of business.

Hung (23m 9s):

They may want to have like one interface to deal with all of their office working temps, for instance. And it's going to be very difficult for any new company to try and inherit that business, or take that business because they don't have the genuinely aren't able to supply all of those, you know, international needs. So, hence I think, you know, a lot of those old players have got a very strong position, you know, start speaking may call it a defensible moat, let's see, and, you know, credit to Job and Talent. They're going to give it a shot to try and crack a new market, but maybe they're kind of tech led type of vibe, but might be able to lock a few things that the other companies aren't can't do.

Hung (23m 56s):

So, yeah, I look forward to seeing how they get off.

Joel (24m 2s):

A billion dollars can help their cHungces quite a bit Lieven?

Lieven (24m 5s):

For sure. And I must say Manpower is sticking to the old business, I guess, or maybe they're doing stuff I'm not, I don't know about, but this company is a digital staffing agency and this works. I mean, everything is getting digital. It's about convenience and they provide it. And we launched the company three years ago, I guess, or I'm not good in dates, but now jobs, which is actually doing the same, we just launched it from scratch, now we're making 60 million this year, a totally digital agency just in Belgium, right now. We are also active in the Netherlands, but still mostly in Belgium, such a small market and gaining from scratch to 60 million in COVID times it's just a big success.

Lieven (24m 47s):

So I can imagine if you're in an active market like Spain, and get such funding. Everything is possible.

Joel (24m 53s):

Yeah 60 million will buy you a lot of Belgian beer, won't it Lieven?

Lieven (24m 58s):

60 million Belgium Beers.

Joel (24m 58s):

Aside from the news much about this company, my guess is if they have a billion dollars to come to the states, I will certainly learn about them. Post haste, who knows they'll maybe even be a sponsor of the show next year, but it seems to me like they've sort of magically balanced contract workers feeling like full-time employees, but while making employers' lives easier, they're basically a staffing firm 2.0, I guess if you were creating a headline for that, I also think that the model could work in the U S especially when you're talking about frontline workers who are on their phones all the time, they want to live through their phones.

Joel (25m 38s):

They want to schedule where they're working. I mean, all this stuff, and there's a lot of competition around platforms and having part-time workers like this, Snap Shift comes to mind, but there are a lot of others, but like I said, a billion dollars can buy you a lot of marketing, can buy you, a lot of salespeople. I think it'll be really interesting to see what Job and Talent does in the states as we head into 2022.

Lieven (26m 6s):

They've only been having a positive EBITDA since 2020 or something really recently. So they're making lots of revenue, but spending it all probably on buying marketshare.

Joel (26m 16s):

And there'll be doing more of that if they come to the US. Let's take a quick break and play a little buy or sell, one of our more fun games on the show. All right, guys, it's a time to play a little buy or sell. I'm guessing you guys know how to play the game. I will highlight news from three companies that have recently raised money. And then you guys will comment on their company and whether you are a buyer or seller of the business. Are you guys ready to play a little buy or sell?

Hung (26m 48s):

Go for it, man.

Joel (26m 50s):

All right, let's go into, let's talk about Quinyx first. Let's stick with the contract workers, Swedish based Quinyx. Hopefully I'm saying that correctly announced recently, that is, it has raised $50 million in funding at a $550 million valuation. This brings the total raise to roughly $89 million, which the company says it'll put toward hiring as well as product research and development. Quinyx, which claims to have a million users deliver scheduling, budget forecasting, and shift planning and swapping through its web punch product. That's the brand name, web punch, a dashboard for time clocking employees can record their time work as an alternative to traditional time clocks.

Joel (27m 32s):

Guys is Quinyx the biggest thing to come out of Sweden since Abba? Lieven are you a buyer or seller?

Lieven (27m 42s):

We're talking about Swedish movies, maybe you should talk to Hung, but in this case, I'm definitely a buyer.

sfx (27m 45s):

What are you doing Step-bro?

Lieven (27m 46s):

I'm a buyer. And I mean, not really because we have Okyo, which is doing the same thing and it's our company. So I'm not buying a Quinyx, but I'm buying the concepts. They're doing something right at exactly the right time. And just to give you an example, COVID was a terrible period to launch scheduling tools because most of the tools are used for the gig economy and gig economy is closely related to events and all those events have been canceled. So we thought, okay, this is going to be a problem. But then we noticed that, just a stupid example, all those vaccine centers had to use scheduling tools for those thousands and thousands of volunteers.

Lieven (28m 31s):

So there's always a new opportunity and this will only grow scheduling -gig work. It goes together perfectly. You need both. So I think they have a great product. I've been looking into their websites. I would buy them if we didn't have Okyo.

Joel (28m 46s):

So are you a buyer or seller?

Lieven (28m 47s):

A buyer.

Joel (28m 48s):

Okay. Initially you weren't. Alright, Hung what's your, what are your thoughts on Quinyx? And what's your favorite Abba's song by the way?

Hung (28m 59s):

100% buyer gimme, gimme, gimme obviously I'm buyer for Abba. No, so basically, and also I never cracked the Swedish film market. I dunno why. But with regards to,

sfx (29m 14s):

sexy music

Hung (29m 15s):

Yeah, it's a tough audience. The, you know, they have a wonderful founder story. So Eric, the guy who founded the business, I think he came across this issue when he was himself like a server at McDonald's and in Stockholm somewhere in 2006 or something when he was a kid. And, yeah, you know, there's lots of hidden problems in lots of businesses that typically, you know, lied dormant until there's some sort of moment where the technology is mature enough for a solution to be found. So I think they are attacking a market that is huge. And they've got a great opportunity.

Hung (29m 55s):

So I think the only threat that I can see to this business is whether the absolute size of the market might actually decrease with increased automation. Let's see. So think about food retail as the example. I mean, these guys are bigger now, supplying scheduling for food retailers, but if you could imagine that markets suddenly shrinking because there's a lot more automation, there's a lot more, you know, self-serve, there's a lot more delivery type stuff. So I think, you know, these macro trends are the things that are going to be a threat to this company, but there's probably enough of that mature market left for them to really make a big difference. So I'm buying

Joel (30m 35s):

Enthusiastic buy. Yeah. So aside from another shitty name, the story is really impressive to me as well. They have over 300 employees and officers across the US, UK, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Norway, Denmark, and the Netherlands. The shift management market segment is expected to grow from 6 billion in 2020 to 9.3 billion in 2025. That's a lot, that's a big increase, by the way. There is a lot of competition. Quinyx competes with When I Work, who we've also talked about on the show before. Spur, Blue Yonder and Deputy, but Quinyx has managed to carve out a slice of the expanding market with over a thousand customers, including Oatley, Cisco, Virgin Atlantic, and DHL, a few names that we all know.

Joel (31m 21s):

They're going to need another round of funding, in my opinion, somewhere between around the $500 million ballpark. But Quinyx also is a buy for me. And the answer to best Abba song is obviously Dancing Queen. Our second startup is out of the UK. So Hung we're looking for really insightful commentary from you. The UK Screen Loop announced a $2.5 million seed round of venture capital for its digital interview app. Its founders include former employees from Revolut Clear Score and Stack Overflow. Most interestingly though, Indeed's co-founder Paul Forster is also an investor.

Joel (32m 3s):

There's a long list of video recruiting solutions, but work from home has also made it exponentially more important. Hung is Screen Loop a buy or sell for you?

Hung (32m 12s):

Yeah, I'm a big buyer on this. Also I think get in early is the right thing to do. I mean, I look at these guys for a lot of reasons. Firstly, I mean, you mentioned the team they've assembled is impressive. You know, so much of the early stage of any business is how great an access you have to the market that you're trying to sell to. And you can imagine with the lineup they've got, they're going to be able to unlock a lot of those very early clients, which are going to make a huge difference to how they progress as a business. I think also they're very much in the right space as well.

Hung (32m 54s):

Obviously the shift to remote has created this huge demand to get better at assessing, you know, people who you might conceivably never meet. So anything associated with assessment tech I think is going to be there. And most importantly, perhaps they do some interesting interview analytics as part of their initial product, which I think is a very exciting segment. So this is the idea that, you know, the technology should be used not only to analyze candidates, but also to analyze the interviewer and that they're attacking that market also by having this component, basically means you can start thinking about, okay, are our hiring managers any good, you know, are our recruiters doing good interviews?

Hung (33m 40s):

Are we biased in any way? You know, why does this guy always cut his interview short, never hire anybody? You know, those types of questions have really been a mystery to business leaders in the analog Europe, you know? But the interview itself, rather tHung being this mysterious sort of place where the hiring manager or the recruiter comes out and says, oh, that candidate "wasn't strong enough" quote, unquote, we are now have the technology to basically transcribe what is being said and do the analysis on how much is being said and what is being said. So I think it's going to be a really interesting segment and almost anybody playing in this space, I'm kind of going to bat.

Joel (34m 20s):

Interesting. All right. Strong buy from Hung Lee. Lieven what are your thoughts on Screen Loop?

Lieven (34m 27s):

This is one to watch for me. I'm not going to sell, not going to buy. I'm going to choose the third option, watch. Is it an option watch? I think I can just invent a new option.

Joel (34m 38s):

What a European thing to do. You're just going to watch. That's how World War II got started. You guys just watched, watched everything. All right.

Lieven (34m 48s):

You came saving our ass, so in the end it was okay.

Joel (34m 55s):

All right. So we'll make that a hold for leaving. So I'm a little bit torn. My brain says this company has no chance with competitors like Hire View, Modern Hire, BrightHire, TalView, Humanly, Clovers, and a ton of others. It'll be way too tough in my opinion, to break through. However, however, my gut says, Paul Forster co-founder of Indeed is a really savvy guy who really knows our space. And frankly, betting against him, is probably a dumb thing to do. I'm also guessing that he knows a few potential acquires for this company.

Joel (35m 36s):

Hint, hint. I could probably name a few, but you probably know who they are. So for that reason, I'm going to put my chips in default, Paul Forrester's investment and where he puts his I'm going to go with my gut and also give Screen Loop a buy rating. All right, our last company, another a London-based company Blink has raised $20 million at a hundred million dollar valuation. The app provides a platform for frontline workers to use and engage with the various IT services used by their organizations. With new funding Blink is planning to relocate its headquarters to New York, to better tackle the US market.

Joel (36m 19s):

The global opportunity is a big one, with an estimated 2.7 billion people working on the front line. According to the company, Blink currently has some 93,000 users and promised to bring those employees simple ways to find payslips, apps, policies, conversations, and answers to questions. One place, one app, one click is their mantra. Guys, are you a buy or sell of Blink?

Lieven (36m 45s):

Well, If it was Blink 182 I would buy, but in this case, nope, just too difficult. If you Google them, you will only find punk rock bands. So no. It won't work.

sfx (37m 0s):

Oh hell no.

Joel (37m 0s):

But bonus points for the nineties, emo music reference. All right. That's a sell from Lieven. Hung what are your thoughts on Blink?

Hung (37m 8s):

So I am going to say buy again and I need to check my bank account because obviously I'm the richest guy in London cause I'm buying everything, but I'm definitely buying. I think that they do some thing that is kind of deceptively simple. Cause if you think about, do you remember back in the days when there was such a thing as an intranet, you know, some sort of private space where, you know, a company only eyes and this is where you'd get your, you know, all of your employee information, maybe there'd be some sort of crappy chat function in there or whatever it was the worst websites ever, right? No one ever sort of spent any time on.

Joel (37m 44s):

EBay was an early adopter of the intranet mobile solution. So yeah, I do remember those.

Hung (37m 48s):

You remember that. So anyway, this is simply just the mobilized intranet, but it's delivered as an intranet, mobilized intranet as a service, the companies that are not going to build it themselves. And it's going to give the employees, I think some, excuse me, mobile first access to the stuff they need, which again, for frontline workers, like, you know that they're not sitting in front of a keyboard and tapping it and looking into a computer screen, they need it on their mobile device. And I think this product provides that type of interface. It gives them, the employers and the business leaders, the opportunity to understand how engaged their employee base is.

Hung (38m 27s):

I think lots of interesting information. When you think about, you know, who is interacting with the intranet or with the app who is talking on it, who is doing what you could probably get some really good information as to the overall employee sentiment of your business doing this. So, and obviously the market is massive as well. So this is all about, you know, people who are "frontline" quote-unquote, which I think is the new word for working class, right? So, you know, if you're a blue collar worker, you're driving a truck or you do something that's physical, but you're not in front of a computer screen, are we actually providing technologies to service, this type of demographic? Answer is we've previously really not.

Hung (39m 7s):

And I think this is a new wave of companies that is starting to do that. So, so yeah, strong buy for me for these guys.

Joel (39m 16s):

Buying everything when he's not banging everything, that's Hung Lee. All right. So my, my 2 cents on this guys is companies have come to the realization that being engaged with a workforce that is more disparate tHung ever is more important tHung ever. As we work from home, as our executives are sporadically placed around the globe having something where everyone can engage is super important. The question for me is whether or not Blink is that solution to do it. And I can't help, but think most of the features of Blink feel really easily, easily replicatable, in my opinion, I have a hard time seeing a moat around this company.

Joel (39m 60s):

I feel like a well-designed app, maybe on slack could do a lot of the same things and probably integrate better with a messaging solution that the company's already using. So to me, there are too many threats for this business. I'm gonna, I'm going to sell. I'm going to sell Blink, but love Blink 182. All right. Let's get into space boys actually, just so you know, guys, buy or sell is over. We're getting to our last news story. Guys the time of luring candidates with signing bonuses and competitive salaries is over. In an attempt to hire 500 new employees a Dutch pizza company has launched one of the most outlandish hiring campaigns ever in which it promises to take one employee to space.

Joel (40m 50s):

Struggling to hire enough delivers Dutch pizza chain, New York pizza, decided to take matters into its own Hungds rather tHung spending more money on job ads, referrals, or relatively standard advertisements. They opted for a campaign with which they hope to hire 500 new employees, quote, "we will send our best pizza deliverer into space." That's from Phillipe Vorst the CEO and founder of the company. Vorst says in 2023 of the company will deliver the first ever pizza to space. With everyone feeling the side effects of the scarcity we're going further tHung anyone else to attract new delivers. Borst said the competition is set to cost the company a total sum of 200,000 euros and is open to all of its employees who have worked at the company for at least four months.

Joel (41m 43s):

Guys, are you ready to get a job at Dutch pizza chain, New York pizza and go to space? Is this a good move from a recruiting standpoint, a retention standpoint, a marketing standpoint, Hung, what are your thoughts?

Hung (41m 56s):

So I missed the positive on this show, obviously, and, I love this. I mean, even as a stunt, it's already worth it. You know, the fact, that it's me, Chad and Cheese, gives it this a massive bit of branding at that a, you know, a traditional thing wouldn't wouldn't have achieved. So, you know, the cost of space travel is definitely declining. I think it's pretty close. It's getting to the point where, you know, some millionaires will be able to afford a seat. So I'm guessing that this guy is thinking, you know, give it another year or two. I think that the schedule award is 2023 or something, isn't it? You know, maybe the cost of sending somebody up there will be will be a couple of hundred grand or something, and that will be worth the higher, that will be worth the applicant flow that he might potentially get for this stunt.

Hung (42m 47s):

Now, are people actually going to apply to the job in order to fly into space? I don't think so. I think people will apply for the jobs, they need a job and they want a job, but this is something that's going to be a fun thing to circulate around around the business for the last 18 months. I mean, think about the jokes or the fun that you can have with this internally. And of course the external PR marketing is huge. So, so yeah, it's a great idea.

Joel (43m 15s):

Yeah. There'll be able to milk this for a long time. Like imagine the actual flight and preparing for it, like yeah...

Hung (43m 20s):

Yeah, expect a red bull style documentary going through mean I've never met this guy and I don't know this business and I've never had a New York pizza from Amsterdam or whatever the these guys are from, but I'm pretty certain, the CEO would be of like mind of the, you know, the store sort of, sort of fellow that would enjoy this type of traumas.

Joel (43m 44s):

PT Barnum is appreciating this move. Lieven what are your thoughts?

Lieven (43m 47s):

I think it's brilliant bullshit. And I don't think they will ever send someone to the moon or to space, but given the PR it's a great idea, of course, but if you just do some simple mathematics, I mean today, sending someone through Virgin Galactic to space for what is it, 15 minutes or something will cost you $55 million. And they say within two years it will be like $450,000. So let's say they'll fly economy class, and it's only $450 thousands. That means if they sell a pizza for 15 euros, it will cost them about all right, they'll have to sell about 30,000 pizzas. This is totally stupid. I mean,

Joel (44m 26s):

All they have to do is hire someone related to Jeff Bezos and they can take a free trip on Blue Horizon so.

Hung (44m 31s):

Send the lifetime sort of award of pizzas to Jeff Bezos, and maybe you get a free seat or something. I dunno if they could probably do something like that.

Lieven (44m 40s):

And they're going to send their best pizza seller to space and it will explode on their roster, pizza or salad. This is just, cheesy.

Joel (44m 48s):

Yeah, we got Mr. Sunshine on one end and Mr. Death and despair on the other. So, so obviously this is great PR they're going to sell a lot of pizzas. You know, they definitely have to get new servers because of the flood of traffic that the Chad and Cheese listeners are going to bring to the company. Obviously, they'll be able to milk this thing for a long time. I think it's way more about selling pizzas and getting brand awareness for this company tHung it is actually retaining and recruiting people. I'll put my American hat on for a second and say the thought of a Dutch pizza chain sending the first pizza to space is frankly, a crime against humanity.

Lieven (45m 27s):

What it's called it's called New York Pizza.

Joel (45m 29s):

Yeah. I can't think of many things less appealing tHung a Dutch pizza company pimping itself as New York style pizza. This is a slap in the face of New York, of America, frankly, which is the best pizza in the world. And in and other times such posing might've led to a global conflict. I'm going to launch a wood shoe making company in Indiana called Dutch wooden shoes to see how the Dutch feel about that. So, anyway, I'm off my American high horse. I've been talking about pizza, I'm frankly ready for lunch. Guys another one is in the books.

Joel (46m 12s):

Hung, tHungk you so much for gracing us with your presence.

Hung (46m 16s):

My pleasure guys really appreciate it.

Joel (46m 17s):

For those who want to know more about you, where would you send them? How can they connect to Hung?

Hung (46m 26s):

I would say anybody interested in recruiting you can check it out on If you're interested in my previous career as a porn star, please go to, IMDB. You probably have to do some creative searching, you'll find me there

Joel (46m 42s):

Very well and guys, if you want to catch up with more European shows, just head out to Lieven another one is in the books. I think we're done all right, without Chad, but we'll be excited to get him back for the next podcast, hopefully. We out.

5 (47m 47s):

Thank you for listening to, what's it called? The podcast with Chad, the Cheese. Brilliant. They talk about recruiting. They talk about technology, but most of all, they talk about nothing. Just a lot of Shout Outs of people, you don't even know and yet you're listening. It's incredible. And not one word about cheese, not one cheddar, blue, nacho, pepper jack, Swiss. So many cheeses and not one word. So weird. Any hoo be sure to subscribe today on iTunes, Spotify, Google play, or wherever you listen to your podcasts, that way you won't miss an episode. And while you're at it, visit just don't expect to find any recipes for grilled cheese. Is so weird. We out.


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