A programming school in central Europe has secured a €7m investment to continue its expansion on the continent.
The institution, Codecool – a programming education provider and IT talent hub – is known for providing industry standard training for IT specialists through a range of programmes that are 3–12 months long. Codecool plans to use its newly-won finances to boost its European presence, hoping to open two brand-new campuses before the end of the year, as well as to invest product development.
With the digital skills shortage in IT set to continue in the next few years with society’s increasing reliance on technology, the investment couldn’t have come at a better time. Estimates from the European Commission (EC) suggest that there were approximately 825,000 vacant positions across the EU tech sector in 2020. On top of this, more than half (58%) of businesses in the industry claimed that it was challenging for them to find IT professionals equipped with the necessary skills.
It’s important to note that the growing labour shortage in tech could jeopardise the global competitiveness of businesses, which could be hugely detrimental to countries’ economic recovery in the fallout of COVID-19.
Additionally, central Europe has become one of the most attractive IT outsourcing destinations for the US and Western European partners, matching traditional IT offshoring and outsourcing hubs such as India or China, in key areas such as service quality, work reliability, knowledge and innovation. The heightening demand for current, practice-oriented IT specialists in Europe is only contributing to this trend.
A viable solution is to improve and support alternative IT training programmes to traditional university courses. The opportunities created by the popularity of reinvented forms of education have already been recognised by investors; based on an analysis by Dealroom, the value of new edtech capital investments increased by 94% in 2020, reaching US$13bn.
As such, Codecool – which already operates sites in Hungary, Romania and Poland, with 1,000+ graduates already working in reputed tech roles across the continent – has set ambitious targets it hopes to achieve by 2025: to establish more than 10 campuses, to run dozens of corporate training programmes and to support thousands of graduates every year.
“The investment enables us to continue our European expansion,” said József Boda, CEO of Codecool. “We’re planning to enter two new markets this year – we consider Austria, Serbia and Bulgaria. Our target is to operate more than 10 Codecool campuses by 2025.
“Expansion, however, does not only mean increasing the number of our schools. Further developing our corporate re- and upskilling courses are also in our focus. Our experience shows that executives are increasingly open to train or reskill their existing employees, as it is often time-consuming and costly to find our experts with appropriate skills on the labour market.”