Checkr gets $9M in the hot background checks market

Checkr is a competitor in the new hire background checks space, which is seeing a lot of growth due to the growth of freelance work platforms, like Homejoy, Instacart, and so on. The company has raised a round of $9 million, led by Accel Partners, with participation of Khosla Ventures, SV Angel, Data Collective and Google Ventures, and a long list of angels.

Checkr is unusual in that the company is providing an API to its customers — around 50 at the present time — who post information about new hires to Checkr’s background-checks-as-a-service offering, and a few days later Checkr posts results, which are based on both public and private data sources. These include criminal records, traffic violations, sex offender databases, and so on.

The reports cost $25-$35, based on degree of information desired.

Here’s an example record from the company website, in this case a positive search for someone on the US terrorist watch list:

Screenshot 2014-10-15 11.52.57

Checkr joins a small but extremely important group of companies that are providing businesses a critical service through APIs, like Stripe. The company has only four employees and is processing over 500 reports a day. Obviously the funding will allow them to expand considerably, and to compete more effectively with others, like Goodhire and BeenVerified. BeenVerified does have an API, but these older start-ups are organized around more traditional interactions with customers — through email and web pages.

The company was founded in April, and the founders met Accel partners at a Y Combinator Demo Day in August.