Workathlon, a recruiting portal for the tourism sector in Greece, has been acquired by the country’s leading online job-finding website Kariera.
Announced during a press conference on Tuesday, the acquisition is expected to take staffing of the Greek tourism industry a step further.
Launched in 2017 as a startup by Greek hotelier Katerina Santikou, Workathlon acts as a link in the recruitment process in the hospitality industry by connecting business owners, mainly hoteliers, with jobseekers.
Prior to the acquisition, Workathlon was backed by angel investors and was also part of Techstars Hub71, one of the largest accelerators worldwide, in Abu Dhabi.
By acquiring Workathlon, Kariera gains access to a database of some 700,000 tourism employees and a clientele from Greece, Cyprus, Abu Dhabi and Dubai, consisting of some 400 companies including leading hospitality brands such as Costa Navarino, Marriott and Radisson Blu and the Mitsis and Mamidaki groups.
Workathlon’s acquisition comes at a pivotal moment for the Greek tourism industry, as 50,000 hotel jobs remained vacant in 2021 alone.
Citing data from ITEP, Santikou said the number of staff shortages in tourism in 2022 reached 61,000 jobs.
“About one in five positions, that is, remained vacant this year while many workers quit their jobs in the middle of the season,” she said.
By aquiring Workathlon, Kariera gains a foothold in a market in which it did not have a particular presence until now.
According to Kariera’s co-founder and chairman, Theofilos Vasileiadis, the 100 percent acquisition of Workathlon will strengthen his company’s expertise in the tourism sector and this way open a new chapter in the staffing of the tourism industry.
“With tourism contributing more than 20 percent to the Greek GDP and with 40 percent of employment directly or indirectly linked to the sector, Kariera enters the sector dynamically through the acquisition of Workathlon,” Vassiliadis said.
It is noted that Kariera will maintain the company brand name “Workathlon” and its nine-member team while Santikou will remain on board as an advisory member.
“Kariera and Workathlon together will focus on a new part in the human resources market, aimed at tourism professionals, giving them new tools and possibilities,” Vassiliadis added.
On her part, Santikou said the acquisition is a huge opportunity as the merge of the know-how of both companies will have a big impact on the tourism staffing market.
“We have an alignment here as our shared vision is to provide an end-to-end solution for successful candidate sourcing on one integrated platform. Together, Kariera and Workathlon will be the clear choice for employers looking for staff,” Santikou said.
Commenting on the staff shortages in tourism, Santikou said that anyone looking for a job in the field can find one.
“Of course, skills need to be upgraded and both employees themselves and employers must invest in this,” she said, adding that the seasonality in Greek tourism may act as a deterrent for many people looking for a job in the sector.
“But salaries are good and serious enterprises also provide proper accommodation to their employees,” Santikou underlined.
During the press conference, Kariera’s head, Vassiliadis, announced the company’s intention to expand abroad with a new HR management software product for small and medium-sized companies that is currently in the works. The new software product is expected to be ready in early 2023 and is aimed at the US market.
Kariera was founded in 1997 initially aiming to provide crucial information and news concerning the labour market to young job seekers. Today it is the leading online recruitment site in Greece.