Award-winning social impact start-up Beam has hired former Bumble director Claire Samson as its first director of people and talent.

It follows a period of rapid growth which saw its headcount double in the space of 12 months.

Samson will report into Beam’s founder and CEO, Alex Stephany, working to scale Beam’s team from 80 to more than 150 people by the end of 2023.

She joins Beam from financial services firm S&P Global, where she worked as director of people planning following their multi-billion dollar merger with IHS Markit.

Prior to that, she spent four years at tech unicorn Bumble in a variety of international operations and HR roles, most recently as director of strategic initiatives in the people and culture team.

During her time there Bumble grew from 50 to 1,000 people, with an acquisition by Blackstone and a successful IPO in 2021.

GoCardless director joins social impact startup Beam

Samson is the latest senior leader to join Beam, following the appointment of chief of staff Rachel Astall from GoCardless’ leadership team last year.

Astall will now step away from the people and talent function and focus full-time on growing Beam’s local government partnerships.

Samson said: “Beam combines the speed and ambition of a tech company like Bumble with an amazing social mission that’s focused on transforming the lives of people on society’s margins.

“Having worked in the social enterprise sector earlier in my career, I’m thrilled to get back into that world and to work alongside such a smart and impressive team.”

Alex Stephany, founder and CEO of Beam, said: “Claire brings exceptional people, talent and scaling experience from one of the world’s biggest tech success stories.

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“I’m excited at the prospect of working alongside Claire to find the most talented people at all levels, from entry-level to C-Suite, to help us achieve our mission in the UK and internationally.”

Beam works in partnership with more than 70 local and central government departments, who refer people to its service, as well as forward-thinking employers and landlords who hire and house Beam’s beneficiaries.

Since launching in 2017, Beam has supported more than 1,200 homeless people and refugees into stable jobs and homes.