These startups are bridging the gap between Indian freelancers and brands

By 2027, the global freelance platforms market is expected to reach $9192.9 million. Here are five startups that help eliminate the gap between skilled freelancers and brands.
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With the rising level of unemployment, freelancing has changed the nature of talent management in numerous ways. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the industry, which offers flexible working hours, saw huge demand for highly-skilled freelancers.

India has the world’s seventh-largest freelance workforce after the US and Bangladesh, with over five lakh people in various industries. Nowadays, many brands prefer hiring gig and contractual workers as they offer domain expertise and flexibility.

And the Indian startup ecosystem is doing its bit. YourStory Research shows that a total of 100 unicorns in India have created 2.50 million jobs in ancillary areas like contractual employment, content creators, tutors, delivery partners, and drivers, among others.

Various reports suggest the global freelance platforms market is expected to reach $9192.9 million by 2027, up from $3393.5 million in 2020, at a CAGR of 15.3 percent. 

These platforms not only help freelancers discover gigs and opportunities but also assist them to upskill through training, online courses, consultations, and specialisations. 

Here are five startups that help eliminate the gap between freelancers and brands.

GigIndia

Founded by Sahil Sharma and Aditya Shirole in 2017, GigIndia, the Pune-based business-to-business (B2B) marketplace, offers on-demand work completion for companies through a pool of skilled, on-demand gig workforce. 

GigIndia founders: Sahil Sharma (left) and Aditya Shirole

The startup leverages artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) for accurate recruitment, a standard quality check mechanism, along with monitoring of gig workers for faster turnaround and quality control.

It offers freelancing and full-time jobs and helps job seekers get access to remote and flexible employment opportunities. 

In 2021, GigIndia raised Rs 7.3 crore in a pre-Series A funding round led by Incubate Fund and Beyond Next Ventures to build its team, technology, and brand.

Recently, PhonePe-acquired GigIndia for an undisclosed amount to leverage its network of freelance micro-entrepreneurs to assist corporates and enterprises acquire more customers.

UniGigs

Dharmendra Ahuja and Harsh Vardhan Jain founded Gurugram-based UniGigs in 2021. The online marketplace connects businesses and startups with on-demand freelance talent.

Further, UniGigs assists freelancers by giving them a platform where they can find clients, build community, and have a value-driven career.

With a zero-commission policy, the startup offers networking and social commerce functionality, giving skilled freelance workers independence and freedom of creativity.

It also helps them improve their visibility with an AI-based targeted engine and provides no minimum costs or contracts. 

The platform has plans to go global to offer freelancers an opportunity to work with a wide range of international clients.

Taskmo

Founded by Prashant Janadri and Naveen Ramachandran in 2016, Bengaluru-based B2B gig marketplace Taskmo leverages technology to screen, manage, train, and deploy grey collar professionals.

Taskmo Founders: Prashant Janadari and Naveen Ramchandra

Formerly known as FeedMyPockets, the "tech-driven on-demand task fulfilment platform" helps large businesses, corporations, brands, and startups by employing gig workers to perform tasks.

The marketplace consists of digitally trained skilled and semi-skilled professionals who can work consistently for week-long engagements or until the need exists.

Taskmo is also on a mission to make jobs accessible to everyone at a global level, as well as digitising all gig jobs for the next billion internet users.

The startup works with companies across diverse industries, including ecommerce, FMCG, retail, foodtech, warehousing, events, marketing, healthcare, and more.

KIWI

Delhi-based Talent-as-a-Service (TaaS) startup KIWI connects clients and freelancers within 180 seconds. 

Founded by technopreneur Imran Ladiwala and serial entrepreneur Mishu Ahluwalia, the startup aims to make a breakthrough in the skills-on-demand market. 

KIWI has created a comprehensive environment, making it easier for workers to find expert solutions, without losing time handling the hunting, briefing, negotiating, and delivery.

It has experts in domains, including graphics and design, content, technology, digital marketing, and health and fitness.

In January 2021, KIWI raised $250,000 in a seed round from PointOne Capital, Core91 VC, AppyHigh, and other angel investors to develop its product and create a user base.

Kool Kanya 

Founded by Vanshika Goenka in 2019, Mumbai-based Kool Kanya is a women-only freelancing networking platform and career community. 

The startup helps women create careers they love through content creation (video and written), involving social media and websites.

It provides access to job opportunities, community support, and straightforward career advice.

The platform is a blend of online and offline women's-targeted communities that lend emotional and mental support.

Edited by Suman Singh

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