‘Duolingo for your career’: coaching app Bloom launches with $10 million raise

Looking forward, Bloom expects to onboard an estimated 100,000 user across the UK and US in 2024
Looking forward, Bloom expects to onboard an estimated 100,000 user across the UK and US in 2024

Bloom, a new career coaching app, has officially launched in the UK and the US on Monday after raising $10 million in seed funding, City A.M. can exclusively reveal.

The mobile-first app has already received backing from institutional investors including Octopus Ventures and MMC Ventures.

The app — described by Chief Executive Alistair Crane as like a Duolingo for your career — focuses on the softer skills that people need in a work environment, such as setting goals and milestones or building relationships.

It uses AI, psychometrics and behavioural science to offer motivation, guidance and inspiration through short-form ‘moments’ — which could range from 90-second audio snippets to a messaging-based coaching check-in — to accelerate people’s professional development.

Speaking to City A.M., Crane explained he had left school at 16 and acknowledged that what made a big difference in his career was the guidance of the managers and leaders around him.

“It got me thinking, how do I take what could be, if you were sat at a dinner party, what you might call an unfair advantage – that you just got access to the right people at the right time — how can you take that and try to make it available to everybody?” Crane said, keen to take the elitism out of career coaching.

“Career growth is broken, professional development isn’t high enough on the agenda, and career coaching is elitist. That’s why we’re revolutionising the coaching industry to provide coaching at scale, helping everybody, not just the few,” he added.

With those who had early access to the app, Crane told City A.M. that 80 per cent had signed up and had their first coaching experience. Of those 80 per cent, all have since been using the app on average four times a week.

Looking forward, Bloom expects to onboard an estimated 100,000 users across the UK and US in 2024. But Crane told City A.M. that the opportunity to go international had been “blown wide open” through AI.

“The ease with which you can translate now into a multitude of languages… means that the business will be able to scale quite easily into other territories next year,” he revealed.