Fingerprint for Success (F4S), an artificial intelligence (AI)-based performance coaching startup used by technology companies such as Atlassian, AWS, Hubspot, and Canva, has raised $6.5 million in a second seed round.
The increase was led by local VC Investible and its syndicate group, Club Investible, backed by US firms Five V Capitaland Salesforce Enterprises.
Investible has supported F4S since the $1.1 million pre-Seed round in 2016, backed by global coaching and mentoring agency ROCeteer.
Canva co-founders Melanie Perkins, Cliff Obrecht and Cameron Adams love F4S so much that they invested in the initial $1.5 million Seed raise in 2019 with former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and again in this follow-up round, along with Google Maps- co-founder Lars Rasmussen, Wedgetail founder Lisa Kate Miller, HiPages co-founder David Vitek, and serial entrepreneur and investor Roger Allen.
F4S has now raised a total of $9.2 million.
Experienced professional coach Michelle Duval founded F4S to amplify her craft and put it beyond the reach of athletes, CEOs and celebrities make it more accessible and affordable. She assembled a team of behavioral and data scientists, engineers and coaches to create the world’s first science-driven platform for professional and personal development.
Called Marlee – an Aboriginal word for a”vlierboom”, which stands for growth and transformation – the AI coach launched in 2021 and has already delivered more than 900,000 minutes of coaching towards 100,000 goals across 20,000 organizations in 194 countries.
Duval said the company has seen 300% year-over-year user growth from the US, UK and India, pushing companies beyond the traditional preference for “hard” technical skills training they saw as needed for performance.
“It’s really the ‘soft’ or what we like to call people skills that have proven time and time again to make or break teams and are most critical in building purposeful, efficient and purposeful teams,” she said.
“Coach Marlee improves personal, team and business performance. We build confidence and self-esteem and help teams work better together. Ultimately, we help people find meaning and fulfillment at work.”
The money is earmarked to make the platform’s real-time personal and team insights and coaching accessible through additional third-party integrations on platforms like Slack and Zoom.
“We look forward to strengthening our market footprint in the US, UK and Asia Pacific and delivering even greater value to our users and teams,” said Duval.
F4S has an integration of applicant tracking with HR software greenhouse to provide hiring managers with information about the candidate’s suitability and success in the culture of their potential new workplace.
Duval believes Generative AI, epitomized by the instant success of ChatGPT, is what gives F4S momentum to its Conversational AI models.
“There is an urgent need to grow quickly with resources and solutions to solve the complex problems that Gen Alpha, GenZs and Millennials inherit,” she said.
“F4S’s scalable technology is a real-time, always-ready solution to optimize the otherwise untapped potential within our future problem solvers and help both individuals and teams envision and navigate a brighter future.”
Trevor Folsom, co-founder of Investible, said the ability to unlock, streamline and enhance soft skills at work is critical to high-performing teams.
“Michelle and her team at F4S have succeeded in using technology to shape the future of work by helping companies build a stronger, more resilient workforce,” says Trevor.
Being among Marlee’s fans Reshmi Buthello, VP People and Culture at Sydney self-driving LiDAR startup Baraja.
“Our team embraces the F4S experience. With Coach Marlee, we are seeing a significant increase in team engagement and retention,” she said.
“Our teams have the power of an ‘always-on’ coach that is not only tailored to individual drivers and motivations, but also scales as a powerful cloud-based solution to support our ever-changing team dynamics.”
More than f4s.com.