Assured Labor, a mobile-centric job networking startup that was founded at MIT four years ago, is breaking into another Latin American market. The company is launching in Brazil with a localized service called TrabalhoJá. This adds to its reach in Mexico and Nicaragua.
“Most of the job sites in Brazil charge job seekers, sometimes up to $50,” said Assured Labor’s CEO David Reich. “We’re totally free and job hunters don’t have to be extorted.”
Assured Labor is a feature phone-based service that helps job seekers land work. The company targets workers that might only have cell phones and lack personal computers or a broadband connection. You can kind of think of it like a LinkedIn for the developing world.
Workers often sign-up in Internet cafes and then the product texts them whenever there are relevant work opportunities that match their skills or what they’re looking for. The service also just started doing voice pre-screenings with candidates. That lets them answer some questions so that employers can vet them before bringing them in for interviews.
Reich started working on the company while in business school at MIT. The company started with a pilot in Nicaragua and then expanded to Mexico. It now has about 250,000 candidates and 5,000 employers and earns revenue from employers, who pay to reach prospective candidates.
The company has raised more than $1 million in funding from angels including former Skype chief executive and chairman Michael Van Swaiij, Kima Ventures and Nexus Venture Partners.