Gig Economy Growth Helps Upwork Soar


According to a study published last September, more than a third of the American workforce is working freelance amid the pandemic. They add $1.2 trillion to the US economy, a number that has grown 22% over the year. The increased unemployment due to the pandemic has accelerated this growth. Upwork (Nasdaq: UPWK) recently reported its fourth-quarter results that saw stellar growth as well.

Upwork’s Financials

For the fourth quarter of the year, Upwork’s revenues grew 32% to $106.2 million. Marketplace revenues grew 34% to $96.9 million. Managed services revenue grew from $8.1 million last year to $9.3 million. Net income increased to $0.9 million for the year compared with a loss of $5.5 million reported a year ago. On an adjusted basis, net income was $0.06 per share compared with a net income of $0.03 last year. Analysts were looking for revenues of $97.34 million for the quarter with a net loss of $0.05 per share.

Among key metrics, Gross services volume (GSV) increased 33% to $727.7 million. Marketplace take rate grew to 13.5% from 13.3% a year ago.

For the full year, Upwork reported a 24% growth in revenue, ending at $376.6 million. Adjusted loss per share grew from $0.15 a year ago to $0.19 for the year.

For the current quarter, Upwork expects revenues of $107-$109 million. For the full year, it expects revenues between $460 and $470 million. The market had forecast revenues of $102.02 million for the quarter and $364.81 million for the year.

Upwork’s Product Upgrades

Recently, Upwork announced the early global launch of its Project Catalog, a curated collection of predefined projects that customers are able to browse through and purchase. The Catalog offers additional opportunities for both businesses and independent professionals to allow them to work together instantly on its work marketplace. Clients are able to leverage its curated collection of predefined, fixed-price projects to solve their urgent work needs. The catalog contains more than ten thousand projects spread across 300 work categories.

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Disclosure: All investors should make their own assessments based on their own research, informed interpretations and risk appetite. This article expresses my own opinions based on my own ...

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