Upwork- The Best Online Network for Freelancers goes public

Upwork Inc is an online market for freelancers. The company helps to provide direct access and communication between employers and freelancers. The merger of Elance and oDesk in 2014 led to the establishment of Elance oDesk, which later rebranded to Upwork. The two companies Elance and oDesk were started in the year 1998 and 2000 respectively, and they have since grown to become the leading freelance platforms in the world.

Stephane Kasiriel is the CEO of Upwork. After the establishment of the company, it raised over $30million in funding. Since then Upwork has been using its investors to raise over $100 million in funding.

Going Public

Among the shareholders of the company include Benchmark that has 15 percent stake, Stigma Partner with 14.2 percent, and T.Rowe Price with a stake of 10.6 percent. First Mark Capital and SG Growth Partners have a stake of 5.7 percent and 5.5 percent respectively.

Upwork has realized revenue of over $225 million with service volume of $1.5 billion. The company has more than 95,000 clients in 180 nations. It has employed 375,000 freelancers. In 2016 the payments processed through the network had totaled to $1.15 billion. This later increased in 2017 to $1.37 billion. In October 2018, the company traded on NASDAQ under the UPWK timepiece. The shares open at $23, which brings a profit of 53 and close at $ 21.18 for 41$ gain.

The Upwork Platform

The Upwork network connects employers and freelancers creating a conducive remote working environment. It provides employers and freelancers with the necessary materials and tools to engage. There are many job openings for web designers, writers, graphic designer, translators, programmers, marketing experts, and app developers. The company enables all freelancers to get equal opportunities irrespective of their location. Upwork makes its money out of the rate paid by employers to freelancers. For instance, it charges 20 percent on every $500 earned by a freelancer.


Upwork has made a positive contribution to the US economy. It has created an alternative workplace which is more convenient. Also, it has contributed immensely to creating employment opportunities for many job seekers. TaskRabbit, Freelancer, Craiglist, and Fiver are its major competitors.