Deliveroo pledges £200,000 in apprenticeship funding to empower small businesses

Deliveroo has partnered with the tech start-up Multiverse to gift over £200,000 of its unspent apprenticeship levy to organisations looking to upskill their staff.

The funds have been allocated to over ten small businesses, ranging from fintech's to consulting start-ups, enabling them to invest further in developing data and digital skills. Those that will benefit from the funding include Soldo, a tech start-up aiming to make managing employee expenses easier, Navenio, who are pioneering indoor mapping technology, and Eebz, who provide analytics to help retailers boost sales.

This funding comes as new data reveal a growing skills gap in the UK. Government statistics show that more than a third (36%) of all vacancies in 2022 were skills shortage vacancies – up from 22% in 2017. One-in-six (15%) employers had at least one staff member with a skills gap, up slightly from 13% in 2017.

This move follows other initiatives by Deliveroo to support skills training. Earlier this year, for example, Deliveroo partnered with Enterprise Nation to help small and medium-sized restaurants across the UK access tailored courses including hiring talent, digital marketing, social media, sustainability and managing finances. Deliveroo’s Rider Academy gives self-employed riders and their families access to over 700 free online courses, with topics including building a CV to design, marketing, entrepreneurship, and coding skills.

Keith McDougall, Director, Learning & Development at Deliveroo, said: “We’re proud to be helping SMEs train their workforce and improve their digital skills, in partnership with Multiverse’s apprenticeship gifting programme. As a UK-based tech company, many of whose alumni have gone on to start their own businesses, it’s great to be able to support other business people with innovative ideas.”

Peppa Wise, VP of GTM at Multiverse, said: 'SMEs are the backbone of our economy, but their ability to succeed and scale is contingent on having the right skills in place. Funding from Deliveroo will enable these small and growing businesses to access the vital training to build the skills they need in tech, data and engineering.

'Individuals who enrol on these programmes will also benefit from access to the Multiverse community, and access to a network, mentoring and events that will enhance their careers long into the future.'