Platform

Upwork Reaps Huge benefits As It Goes Public

Recently Upwork went public, and its IPO attracted numerous investments from the tech world. Upwork started trading on the NASDAQ Exchange under the ticker UPWK in October 20018. The company initially priced $12.5 million shares at $15 which was slightly above the estimated range of $10- $14. Shares opened at $23 which was a 53 percent gain and closed at $21.18.According to Stephane Kasriel, the ultimate goal of this move was to show the company out as the largest online platform for freelancers.

Many of the Upwork’s investors are tech companies. Sigma Partners, Benchmark, FirstMark Capital and SG Growth Partners are some of the largest stakeholders at Upwork. Dragoneer Investment Group announced its intention of buying up to 20 percent of the IPO valued at close to $32 million by early October. It is evident that Upwork has benefited immensely from this move. Going forward, according to the McKinsey Global Institute, the freelancing economy is projected to generate close to $2.7 trillion every year by 2025.

Upwork (previously known as Elance o-Desk) is a platform that allows businesses and qualified freelancers in different areas of expertise to come together remotely and work. Upwork is based in San Francisco, California and Mountain View. Led by a team of experts, including Stephane Kasriel, the Chief Executive Officer and Thomas Layton, the Chairman, Upwork has grown a lot since its inception. As at now, the firm has over 12 million registered freelancers and over 5 million clients.

Beerud Sheth, Sanjah Noronha, and Srini Anumolu founded Elance in 1999. O-Desk, on the other hand, was started in 2003 by Karamankalis and Odysseas Tsatalos. The two firms merged in December 2013 to form Elance o-desk. Eighteen months later, Elance o-desk was rebranded Upwork. As of 2017, Upwork is said to be generating revenue of over $1 billion with millions of clients and freelancers from over 180 countries across the globe.

Upwork allows clients to outsource labor via their platform. Through Upwork, the clients can interview and possibly hire and work with the freelancers. The platform offers various features to help in the client-freelancer interaction. One of them is the real-time chat feature which helps clients find the right freelancers quickly and hire them.