Gig-a-bytes: these 5 startups are helping freelancers with end-to-end solutions
Startups are slowly enabling India’s burgeoning gig economy. From providing software and design expertise, house help or following up on payments, these five ventures are disrupting a much-ignored sector.
Many in the creative field aver that they get more done on the days they work from home. The reasons – less travel time and a comfortable environment.
Being your own boss has its pluses. Freelancing in today’s digital ecosystem has come of age - Flexible working hours, working on projects that help you grow and choosing what work works for you. It’s no surprise then that India is one of the major hubs of the new-age gig economy.
A 2017 EY study found that 24 percent of the world’s gig workers come from India. Then, a 2018-PayPal report reiterated this by stating that one in every four freelancers is from India.
Dominating the software ecosystem, India accounts for 50 percent of global freelancers, a majority under the age of 40.
Besides the popular ones – Zirtual, AskSunday, Freelancer.com and VirtualEmployee.co.in, many other startups are boosting India’s burgeoning gig economy.
From sourcing freelancers to enabling payments, YourStory lists startups that are facilitating the gig economy.
Founded in 2016 by three IIM-Ahmedabad graduates - Karthik Sridharan, Hrishikesh Pradeshi and Suvansh Bansal, Flexiple helps startups and entrepreneurs’ source and work with freelance developers and designers with diverse backgrounds and skillsets.
These freelancers are usually backend developers, UX-experts and illustrators. The startup claims that some of their freelancers have worked with the likes of Amazon, Adobe, Microsoft, Ola and Goldman Sachs.
The Bengaluru-based bootstrapped startup has on-boarded more than 200 freelancers from seven countries who have served more than 75 clients so far. Flexiple’s client list includes Bain and Company, IFMR, Urban Ladder, Instamojo, AirPR, Haptik and Simpl.
Flexiple’s freelancers undergo stringent screening processes. Their general aptitude and soft skills are tested along with proven skillsets.
Delhi-based Wishup is a virtual employee provider, bridging the gap between entrepreneurs and people looking to work from home. Through its various selection processes and interviews, Wishup aggregates talent, and matches skillsets of its virtual employees with the clients’ needs and demands.
Founded in July 2015, by IIT Madras batchmates – Neelesh Rangwani and Vivek Gupta, Wishup claims to have more than 500 business clients including 91Springboard.
These virtual employees can manage social media activities, client management, sales excellence, provide recruitment support, email marketing, create databases and manage CRM tools.
The startup is funded by Inflection Point Ventures, Vinay Bansal, and a few of his colleagues. It has also been funded by Tracxn, 500 Startups and other angels in the past.
One of the most common problems for any service provider or freelancer is payments. Most independent employees complain about delayed payments. Bengaluru-based Refrens solves this problem.
Founded in July 2019, Refrens offers free invoicing software for business service providers, and helps them collect payments faster from clients.
The startup was founded by former Freecharge and ZipDial product manager Naman Sarawagi and Mohit Jain, tech consultant to multiple startups.
Mostly focusing on B2B service providers, Refrens claims to have 400 businesses using their platform. The bootstrapped startup is currently growing at 20 percent week-on-week.
Domestic help, caretakers, cooks, drivers or pet custodians – they are all a part of the gig economy, and, Mumbai-based startup MyChores is working with them.
Founded in 2015 by Andrew V, the platform provides an online assisted search service to help search, screen and shortlist the best candidates in any category of house help, quickly. All the service providers have to do is register with MyChores, instead of checking vacancies door-to-door.
MyChores also provides specific service providers for baby care, elderly care and deep cleaning of homes. Currently bootstrapped, the startup targets double-income nuclear households. Domestic help registered with MyChores are paid between Rs 6,000 and Rs 15,000.
Crescent Inc is a platform for knowledge workers of the gig economy. Founded by Hatim Lokhandwala and Pritish Roy, in December 2015, Crescent Inc started its journey by signing on professionals around the Pune region in 2016.
The professionals were mostly photographers and designers. In the past three years, the bootstrapped startup has scaled over 10,000 projects for more than 100 companies.
Crescent Inc assigns work based on the availability of, and quality of work performed by the freelancer or gig worker.
Founded by Preetham Parvatham and Asher Ali, WinnerBrands provides end-to-end branding solutions – from landing a unique name to finalising the packaging, and finally taking the product to the customer.
Founded in August 2017, WinnerBrands works alongside a pool of curated freelancers and agency partners.
The team consists of more than 50 freelance partners that provide legal, packaging, procurement, printing and photography services. About 90 percent of its freelancers are former design heads or art directors from leading agencies.
A bootstrapped business so far, WinnerBrands has delivered more than 300 projects a year for 180 clients and claims to have almost 55 percent repeat customers.
(Edited by Suruchi Kapur Gomes)