As investors, we typically focus on growth in financial terms.

Another consideration is our positive impact on the wider community, which is shown by the good news that the growth in sustainable jobs within the Bailador portfolio of technology companies is very impressive.

On average, employee numbers have almost tripled since our original investment was made, as shown in the table below.

The above numbers do not take into account the broader base of employment generated by marketplace models such as Straker Translations, who not only employ ~148 personnel but also contract with a global army of ~13,000 language translation specialists as part of their technology-enabled platform.

The strong growth in headcount of BTI’s portfolio companies has been the result of new employment opportunities not just for software developers, but also in areas such as sales and marketing, finance, strategy and senior management. While the portfolio is generating over 65% of revenue from international markets, the bulk of the jobs are in Australia and NZ.

It has been widely publicised that some technological advancements such as robotisation, automation and artificial intelligence could put humans at risk of widespread job losses. Whilst the World Economic Forum has estimated that over 75 million jobs could be made obsolete by 2022, the report also estimated technological advancements could create up to 133 million new jobs over the same period.

StartupAUS recently found, on average, a new job was created for every US$300,000 of investment. The data underlying Bailador’s portfolio companies suggests a job creation ratio for expansion stage businesses could be closer to US$200,000 of capital for each new employee.

It is a fact that advances in technology will put some traditional jobs at risk. It’s important that proactive steps are taken to create sustainable Australian and NZ jobs in the digital age and that businesses recognise the need for human capital investment to ensure an effective transition to new technologies.

While generating premium investment returns is the primary focus of Bailador’s investment approach, it’s nice to know this investment is also driving sustainable job growth.