In this week’s episode of the UKTN Podcast, Multiverse CEO Euan Blair discusses the role that apprenticeships can play in the future of work, the impact of AI on skills, and the challenges of breaking into the US market.
Blair founded Multiverse in 2016. The edtech company has trained over 10,000 apprentices in partnership with more than 1,000 global employers. The London-headquartered company charges blue-chip companies for placing apprentices and provides tools to track the impact of their learning.
During the show, which airs during National Apprenticeship Week, Blair shares how his own education experience gave him the idea to launch Multiverse.
“I didn’t love studying for studying’s sake,” the Multiverse boss tells the UKTN Podcast.
While Blair believes that technological advancements are a “net positive” for society and the economy, he says there has been an “incredible amount of economic friction and devastation that they’ve left behind”.
He says that the recent rise of generative AI tools has put a greater emphasis on the need for workers to reskill.
“Everyone needs to be taught how to be a co-pilot of AI, how to work with it, the ethics of AI – this is absolutely crucial,” says Blair.
While the company achieved a unicorn valuation in 2022, it is yet to achieve profitability. In 2021, the London-headquartered launched in the US.
Multiverse recently scaled back its US workforce through layoffs equivalent to 5% of its global headcount after the business missed revenue targets. In this episode, Blair shares some of the unique challenges for a British edtech company breaking into the US market.
“When I look at the US, the biggest thing we’ve been focused on establishing is actually landing this concept of apprenticeships, because there isn’t the same historic muscle around it there,” he says.
Blair, who is the eldest son of former British prime minister Tony Blair, was awarded an MBE for services to education in 2022.
The UKTN Podcast is sponsored by HSBC Innovation Banking, which offers flexible banking solutions for startups, scaleups, growth businesses, investors and those working towards IPO.
Throughout the series, the UKTN Podcast will be speaking to some of the key movers and shakers from UK tech. We’ll learn growth strategies from both seasoned and up-and-coming founders, hear market sentiments from investors, and question policymakers on the decisions impacting the country’s innovation economy.
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