News Goes Local

In a world where it seems every service is attempting to cash into the local services market - Amazon and Google most notably - an online marketplace for freelance workers called is joining the party with the launch of its own local marketplace.

The new Freelancer Local service will kick off in the firm's home country of Australia before making a global expansion.

It is pitched to become the "Uber for local jobs," says company CEO Matt Barrie, further noting that the consumers in need can now use either the website or mobile app to track down the independent contractor of their choice.

The new service will be blended with existing services on the platform - currently the service has 15 million registered users in 73K cities bidding with 2 million people bidding on some job or other at any moment.

Barrie says that the firm had been considering the local expansion, but has “held back because the business lacked global liquidity. Even though the market for local services is 10 times bigger than the one for online work, the average job size is smaller,” he says.

Barrie also noted that it does not intend to partner with other providers to expand its network - unlike larger competitors like Amazon, who have done precisely that with their home service.

Instead, he says the company has become large enough that it can leverage its own network of possible professionals for a wide variety of jobs.

“We have a lot of coverage so we thought it was a great time to get going on this,” he says.

Going forward, Freelancer does not plan to change its current commission structure - 10 percent of any transaction goes to the site. Freelancer first went public two years ago and currently has a market cap of $400 million.



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