SA freelancing platform Hooros pivots to boost monetisation

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South African freelancing platform Hooros has pivoted to adopt a vetting model as it looks to provide a more efficient service to customers and boost monetisation.

Disrupt Africa reported in September on the launch of Hooros, an online marketplace aimed at disrupting the South African freelancing market by connecting businesses with local freelancers capable of executing on projects.

Hooros – the name of which is derived from the Egyptian sky god Horus – started life as a more traditional freelancing platform, with clients able to browse through profiles and portfolios of freelancers and hire individuals or teams depending on their project needs.

The startup has, however, now pivoted from its previous model, and begun vetting the developers, designers and copywriters that list themselves on the site. Users are no longer able to post profiles before the vetting process is complete.

“We decided to launch a service that will help us get a better understanding of user behaviour so we can position ourselves more effectively in the market,” founder Emmanuel Sibanda told Disrupt Africa.

The changes, he said, were based on market feedback, with clients requiring assurance that the people they are working with have been vetted. Results so far have been positive, with Hooros now making money and taking on more paying clients.

“Clients are willing to pay which means we have a stronger value proposition,” Sibanda said.

“The monetisation route with the previous model required us to spend more development time and there was no clear differentiation between us and the other startups in the local space doing somewhat similar things.”

Hooros makes money by collecting a 15 per cent commission from any fee paid by a client to a freelancer through the platform. If a freelancer listed on Hooros is hired by a client as a permanent employee the startup takes a 15 per cent commission on the employee’s salary for the first two months.

“This pivot is more inline with our core vision of connecting established and startup businesses to expert developers,designers and copywriters. Vetting our users ensures that we are better positioned to carry out that vision,” Sibanda said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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