Elance, a freelance marketplace that connects clients and freelancers, announced Tuesday it has raised $16 million in funding. Stripes Group led the funding, with participation from New Enterprise Associates and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
“Elance has experienced tremendous growth over the past two years by enabling access to a flexible and independent online workforce,” CEO Fabio Rosati said in statement to VentureBeat, ”The additional funding will allow us to continue to build our platform and expand our client and contractor networks around the world.”
Elance is an online marketplace that helps clients find freelancers for writing, programming, design, marketing, legal, and finance projects and hourly jobs. Clients post the details of job they need done, complete with how much they are willing to pay and how much time they have to it get done. Freelancers then submit a proposal for the job and if they are a good match, the client can hire them.
The company sure makes sure both parties are happy and the freelancer gets paid on time. Elance even provides project management tools such as Tracker; a desktop client that logs the amount of hours the freelancer works and takes periodic screenshots, so the client can keep tabs on the project. Freelancers can demonstrate their expertise by taking skill tests related to their field and getting recommendations from past projects, so clients can have confidence in their abilities to do the job.
2011 was a strong year for the freelance marketplace, with more than 120 percent growth in freelance workers over 2010. Elance reports freelancers have earned nearly $500 million to date with the service. Elance will use the funding to keep up with demand of its services.
Elance is based in Mountain View, CA and Oslo, Norway.