Gig Economy Work Space
A breakdown of services offered, year incorporated, annual revenue growth, global reach, and number of gig workers, along with examples of how content localization is applied by the company is provided in the brief below for Airbnb, Cabify, Care.com, Etsy, Fiverr, Lyft, Task Rabbit, and Uber. An explanation for why these companies were selected as the top 8 gig economy companies is provided in the last section of the brief.
- Founded in 2007, Airbnb is headquartered in San Francisco and has additional offices in Portland and Seattle in the United States, and across the globe in Beijing, Dublin, Montreal, Singapore, and Tokyo. The company has an estimated 13,346 employees.
- Airbnb has more than seven million listings in over 100,000 cities located in more than 220 countries and regions. Accumulated guest arrivals since inception numbers over 750 million.
- Airbnb is a privately held company, and as such earnings' data is not usually placed in the public domain. Revenue was estimated at $3.6 billion in 2018, and Bloomberg estimates that revenue for the fourth quarter of 2019 was $1.1 billion, an increase of 32%.
- In addition to offering accommodation services, Airbnb also offers physical and online experiences. Accommodation services are offered in packages for Airbnb Plus, Airbnb Luxe, and Airbnb for Work. Users of the platform can also access last minute deals for hotel rooms.
- Users of Airbnb are also offered the option to participate in activities designed to show off location specific details. The company took this service a step further and began to offer the localized experiences to a global audience via the internet with online experiences.
- In addition to offering English tailored websites for eight English-speaking countries, and Spanish tailored websites for nineteen Spanish speaking markets, Airbnb also offers websites in the local languages for 53 non-English speaking markets.
- Care.com is a marketplace for the provision of caregiver services. It was founded in 2006, and is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts. The company has additional offices in Austin, San Francisco, and Berlin.
- At the end of Q3'19 the marketplace had 35.2 million members, and increase of 14% over the comparable period in 2018. Families registered on the platform numbered 20.6 million, an increase of 16% over the same period in 2018, while registration of caregivers increased to 14.6 million, improving by 11% over the figure for the same period in 2018.
- Caregiving services are offered to families, businesses, and employers in childcare, tutors, senior care, housekeeping, special needs care, and pet care. Caregivers are given the opportunity to pursue jobs and access benefits that are not available to an independent workforce.
- Annual revenue in 2018 was $192.3 million, a 10% increase over the $174.1 million posted in 2017. Revenue in Q3'19 was $53.3 million, an increase of 8% over the same period in 2018. Guidance for revenue expectations in Q4 was between $50.7 to $50.9 million, and for full year revenue for 2019 was estimated at between $208.3 million to $208.5 million.
- The US remains the largest market by revenue with $39.5 million attributable to the US market in Q3'19, increasing by 3% over the $38.5 million posted for the comparable period in 2018. Revenue attributable from other markets amounted to $13.8 million, up 29% over the comparable period in 2018 at $10.7 million.
- Care.com was acquired by IAC for $500 million in early 2020. Key corporate clients are Bloomberg, USA Today, CNBC, Mom.com, Real Simple and Fortune.
- Care.com provides caregiving services in over 20 countries, including content in the native languages for countries such as Finland, Germany, and Spain, among others. Content localization is evidenced by the spelling of favorite as favourite on the United Kingdom version of the Care.com website.
- Cabify operates a ride sharing company that connects private and business users of transport with the best option for their needs. The company was founded in 2011, and is headquartered in Madrid Spain.
- Operating primarily in Latin America and Spain, Cabify has a presence in over 100 cities, and employs in excess of 1,000 direct employees. The company website estimates its driver partners in the gig economy to number in the "hundreds of thousands."
- Cabify is owned by Max Mobility, a privately held company. Net sales in 2019 was $104 million from $708 million worth of rides. In 2018 Cabify raised $160 million from investors and was valued at $1.4 billion. Among its investors are Rakuten from Japan (40%). Employees retain 25% of company shares.
- Principal markets for Cabify are Spain, where it claims to be the market leader, and Peru, Chile, and Argentina.
- For drivers the company offers support, increased income, and safe journeys. Businesses are offered flexible payment terms, a quality and safe product, and punctuality. The client has control over the driving experience and can access the Cabify Business API to digitize and automate associated HR and finance management processes.
- Cabify has websites in English, Portuguese, and Spanish. Content is localized for the Brazilian, English-speaking, and Spanish speaking markets in Argentina, Chile Columbia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Spain, and Uruguay.
- Etsy was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in the Dumbo neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. Etsy has 1,240 employees. Reverb is a fully owned subsidiary of Etsy.
- The company has additional offices in Hudson, Chicago, and San Francisco in the US, along with international offices in Berlin, Dublin, London, New Delhi, Paris, and Toronto.
- Gross Merchandise Sales in 2019 was $5 billion with total revenue amounting to $818 million. This is an increase of $215 million over revenue for 2018 which amounted to $603 million.
- Etsy provides a marketplace characterized by its sale of unique products, global reach, organic traffic base, device mobility, connected buyers and sellers, and buyer intent. Paid for services provided to sellers are advertising and shipping labels. Etsy also provided seller tools and education.
- Reverb is a marketplace for musical instruments with onsite promotion and a content driven marketing strategy. Buyers and sellers can sell and purchase vintage musical gear from anywhere in the world.
- The top markets for Etsy are the US, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Australia, and France. Etsy estimates the online market size for these core geographic markets represents a market opportunity totaling $249 billion, which increases to $1.7 billion when offline opportunities are included.
- Active buyers on the Etsy platform numbered 60.3 million as at 30 June 2020, while active sellers numbered 3.1 million.
- Etsy's websites for the US is provided in English and Spanish. Aside from English and Spanish, foreign language websites are provided for eight languages. The company also differentiates websites for English targeted at a US audience, and for English targeted at a UK audience.
- Fiverr was founded in 2010 and is headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel. The company has offices in New York City, San Francisco, Orlando, Phoenix, London, and Berlin. Fiverr has 419 employees as at 31 December 2019.
- Active buyers, defined as entities that have ordered a Gig on Fiverr within the last 12 months, totaled 2.5 million at the end of Q1'20.
- Annual revenue in 2019 was $107 million. This is a year-on-year increase of 42%. On a quarterly basis Q1'20 posted a 44% year-on-year increase over Q1'19 from $24 million to $34 million. The adjusted EBITDA margin for 2019 was 16.8% and 8.4% for Q1'20. The Net Promoter Score (NPS) for buyers was 66 and 73 for sellers as at 31 March 2020. As at the end of Q1'20, revenue from non-English speaking countries accounted for 32% of total revenue, a 2% year-on-year increase from the same period in 2019.
- The services' marketplace offers digital services in over 400 categories in eight verticals in over 160 countries. The verticals are graphics and design, digital marketing, writing and translation, video and animation, music and audio, programming and technology, business, and lifestyle.
- In addition to the services' marketplace, Fiverr also offers Learn From Fiverr, AND.CO, and ClearVoice. Learn from Fiverr is an e-learning platform with course content developed especially for Fiverr. And.co, is a freelancer business management software with a subscription revenue model, and Clear Voice is a marketing platform that offers marketing content to medium and large companies on a subscription model.
- The long term strategy targets multiple levers for growth. These are to innovate new technology and services, add new buyers, move up market for buyers and sellers, expand the gig catalog, and expand geographic footprint.
- Key corporate clients of Fiverr are PayPal, Google, Intuit, Facebook, and Netflix.
- Regarding content localization, in Q1'20 Fiverr launched a French language website and localized user generated content on all of its non-English websites. In Q2'20, Fiverr also launched websites in Spanish, German, Italian and Dutch.
- Lyft was incorporated in 2007, however the company began operations in 2012.
- Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Lyft operates in over 300 cities in the US and Canada. The company had 5.683 employees distributed over 100 offices and additional locations as at 31 December 2019.
- Lyft had 22.9 million active riders as at 31 December 2019. This figure declined to 8.7 million for Q2'20, also a decline from 21.8 million for Q2'19. There was minimal change to the revenue per rider, moving from $39.77 in Q2'19 to $39.06 in Q2'20.
- Total revenue in 2019 was $3.6 billion, a year over year increase of 68% from 2018. Revenue for Q2'20 declined to $339 million, a decrease of $528 million over the comparable period in 2019. Adjusted EBITDA for Q2'20 was $280 million, compared to $204 million in Q2'19.
- The services offered by Lyft include a ride sharing marketplace, and with restricted availability in selected markets shared bikes and scooters, public transit, autonomous vehicles, and Lyft rentals.
- Key clients are Airbnb, Delta, Salesforce, Slack, and the University of Southern California, among others.
- Content localization is evident on the Lyft platform from the greeting image for new drivers to join Lyft. For New York City, the image is a graphic of skyscrapers, whereas the image for Vancouver s a photograph of the city's waterways.
- Taskrabbit is a task management service platform founded in 2008 where users can seek help with everyday chores. The company is headquartered in San Francisco, California, with additional locations in Austin, New York, and London.
- Services are provided in 45 categories ranging from delivery, moving assistance, minor home repairs, mounting TVs, and furniture assembly, among many others.
- Acquired by the Ingka Group in 2017. TaskRabbit is available in all IKEA stores in the US. The company also offers its services in over 50 cities in the US, United Kingdom, Canada, and France.
- The total gig workers as at 2019 was 140,000, of which 60% are millennial. These gig workers earn an average of $35 per hour in the US, £23 per hour in the United Kingdom and C$32 per hour in Canada.
- TaskRabbit is privately held with direct employees estimated at between 51 to 100. Annual revenue was not posted on the website, nor was it found on company databases such as Crunchbase and Craft.co, or when a search of the financial for fiscal year 2019 for IKEA was completed. Both Crunchbase and Craft.co notes that TaskRabbit has received a total of $37.7 million in funding to date.
- Evidence that TaskRabbit engages in content localization is presented by the home page for the Austin, United Kingdom and French markets. The home page for the Austin market does not feature any taskers, whereas the United Kingdom website does. Customer testimonials also change with the markets,
- Incorporated in Delaware, Uber was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company is active in 69 countries and over 10,000 cities.
- Uber currently offers a ride sharing service, along with self-driving technology, urban air transport, Uber Eats, Uber for Business, and Uber Freight.
- Annual revenue in 2019 was $14.147 billion, a 26% change over the $11.270 billion in revenue earned for 2018.
- Thus far for 2020, Uber has experienced mixed financial results. Overall gross bookings declined by 35% year over year to $10 billion for Q2'20, while gross bookings isolated for delivery, experienced a growth of 122% year on year growth to $7 billion.
- Uber's major markets are the US and Canada, followed by Latin America. The company also operates in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, and finally the Asia Pacific region.
- Uber has over 91 million active consumers on the platform requesting over 14 million trips on a daily basis, The company employs over 22,000 employees.
- Uber practices content localization with the provision of websites in English, Spanish, and mainland Chinese.
Selection of Top 8
- The top eight companies in the gig economy space offering content localization services were sourced from the g2.com website, from a Toolbox HR article, and from The Balance Small Business. The top companies each have multiple global markets, and confirmation that a selected company engages in content localization was sourced from the company website as well as from general content on the internet.
- On g2.com customer reviews are used to rate the companies out of five stars, Fiverr was rated the top freelance platform with an average rating of 4.4 of 5 stars from 115 reviews.
- Toolbox HR is a resource community for professionals from the worlds of tech, HR, finance, and marketing. The company published an article on 15 June 2020 where Airbnb (1), Cabify (3), Care.com (4), Etsy (5), Fiverr (7), TaskRabbit (11), and Uber (13) were listed on its list of the top 15 gig economy companies.
- The Balance Small Business is a website that provides expert advice to small businesses on entrepreneurship and management. Among the companies listed as the best sites to find gig job were TaskRabbit, and Fiverr.