Apprenticeship start-up WhiteHat has announced ambitious plans to expand. The business, co-founded by Euan Blair, said today it has raised $16 million (£12.8 million) of investment, and is now working with 250 employers including BP, Facebook, Salesforce and Santander.
The funding will allow WhiteHat to open its apprenticeship programmes to more employers to help plug their skills gap. Currently based in London, WhiteHat has said it will now start expanding across the UK, starting with Leeds.
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The business was founded in 2016 by Mr Blair, who leads the business with co-founder and president Sophie Adelman (both pictured). It matches non-graduate talent to professional services and digital roles and delivers applied learning throughout their apprenticeship. The business currently has 750 apprentices, 65 per cent of which are from BAME backgrounds. This month, it launched a free coding summer school for young women across London looking to pursue careers in software engineering.
Euan Blair, co-founder and chief executive of WhiteHat, said: “Today, if you want a great career the assumption is you go to university, but spiralling costs of higher education, lack of diversity in leadership positions and a major global skills gap in digital and tech are all evidence that this model isn’t working.”
He added: “At WhiteHat we’re building an outstanding alternative to university. Our apprentices get the job they want, the training and qualifications to succeed and a coach to help them excel, all while earning from day one. With no debt, no wasted time and the opportunity to learn relevant and desirable skills, this is the future of work and education.”