Work Market is a very fast growing competitor in the very hot freelance labor “placeform” market (placeform = marketplace + platform). The $10 million round was led by a new investor, SoftBank Capital, with additional participation from earlier investors Union Square Ventures and Spark Capital. Jordan Levy, of SoftBank Capital NY, will join the Work Market board as observer. The funds will be used to expand the company’s activities, especially sales and marketing.
This is a very hot market, with oDesk, Elance, MBO Partners, and others developing overlapping but differentiated offerings. I am going to be tracking these folks closely and possibly writing a report on that niche.
There is a lot of smart money pouring into systems that will underlie the future of work.
So far, these companies are focused almost exclusively on the first order issues: hiring, billing, and vetting. But I expect that they will be branching into many adjacent domains. For example, why wouldn’t oDesk or Work Market roll out an advanced solution for cooperative task management? At first it may seem like a stretch, but it’s not.
I also expect to see LinkedIn making a push here, too.