Video interview site Sonru raises €272k in venture capital

21 May 2010

A new service that allows firms to hold video interviews with job applicants has raised €272,000 in venture investment from a number of sources, including Kernel Capital, the Bank of Ireland Seed Fund, BES funding and angel investment.

The news comes days after Sonru, headed by Fergal O’Byrne, signed an exclusive partnership with which will enable the site to become the first of its kind in Ireland to offer online video interviewing.

The announcement was made in Cork by the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation, Batt O’Keeffe TD.

“This investment is a validation of our business plan and our business model,” O’ Byrne, CEO of Sonru Ltd, explained.

“The funds will help us to develop our product range and to source and sign new resellers. We have an aggressive growth strategy and this investment by the Bank of Ireland Seed Fund will help to deliver it.”

Investment sources

Some €100,000 of the investment came from the Bank of Ireland Seed and Early Stage Investment Fund and the remaining €172,000 in funds was raised through private BES and angel investment sourced by the company.

Dr Daniel McCaughan, chief technology adviser (ICT), Kernel Capital, said: “In these difficult economic times, the ability to sift in recruitment through a thorough online video interview process, which is proven to be satisfactory to both interviewer and interviewee, is a valuable contribution to cost and time savings.

“Sonru has a very strong management team, excellent client validation and a highly scalable product amenable to an international client base. We expect to see significant market growth in the future,” Dr McCaughan said.

O’Byrne said the deal with will enable the recruitment website to become the first of its kind in Ireland to offer online video interviewing.

‘’We are delighted to partner with They are a very enthusiastic adopter of new and innovative technologies and video interviewing fits perfectly with their existing product suite and offers real value to their customer base. We are currently working with other websites within the portfolio, parent company of, to develop our overall strategy of global growth,” he said.’s online jobs index of 2010 for Q1 revealed an increase of 9pc in jobs advertised online in Ireland since Q4 2009.

“With the addition of online video interviewing technology, customers will now be able to get a genuine experience of each candidate before they ever meet them in person through Sonru’s secure video interviews,” Gregory Owens, sales director,, said.

“Online video interviewing will enable employers to save time and money when choosing the successful candidate, while at the same time ensuring that they are making the best choice when short listing candidates.”

By John Kennedy

Photo: Left to right: Orla Rimmington, operations manager, Kernel Capital; Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation, Batt O’ Keeffe TD; Lorraine Spillane, treasury manager, Global Markets, Bank of Ireland; Fergal O’ Byrne, CEO, Sonru

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years