Shalom Life | March 29, 2014

Startup Club: Fiverr

In a mere three years, Fiverr has successfully developed its own 'gig' economy; with over 2 million gigs currently online, Shalom Life takes a look at the company's successful strategy

By: Daniel Koren

Published: November 13th, 2013 in Business » World

Over the past few decades, a growing number of small businesses involved in various industries have popped up around the world meeting the needs of an ever-growing, ever-changing market.

Jewish businessmen and innovators continue to excel throughout these industries, displaying their prowess as creative, forward-thinking entrepreneurs, and tapping into continuously developing markets with 'startup' companies.

In a bid to recognize these decorated entrepreneurs for their ongoing contributions and advancements to these fields, Shalom Life is pleased to present: Startup Club, highlighting the best and the brightest of Jewish entrepreneurs who continue to provide our community with new, influential and innovative ideas that will forever change the way we interact with the world, and with one another.

Follow our lead and we’ll follow yours – send us tips or suggestions via email, comment below or tweet us @ShalomLife, in our mission to celebrate the most visionary of Jewish entrepreneurs.


Business: Fiverr

Based Out Of: Tel Aviv, Israel; New York, U.S.

Entrepreneur: Micha Kaufman, Shai Wininger

Industry: Online Marketplace

In 2010, Israelis Micha Kaufman (CEO, co-founder) and Shai Wininger (CTO, co-founder) developed an online marketplace where people could sell their own services, from marketing advice and freelance writing to teaching choreography or making someone laugh, all for the price of $5.

They called it Fiverr.

It seems doubtful, however, that they could have properly anticipated the gargantuan effect its online 'gig economy' would inevitably have, not just on the U.S. economy, but on the global economy, as more users continue to sell products, services, gestures and the like via what is now the world's largest online marketplace for services starting at $5.

On August 12th, the company reached a monumental milestone, connecting its users to 2 million gigs worldwide. Three years into their venture, Kaufman and Wininger were able to garner 1.7 million registered users with buyers and sellers coming from 200 countries, 120 categories within Fiverr with an average of 4,000 gigs being added daily, and one gig purchased every 6 seconds.

To discover the trajectory that led to Fiverr becoming a lucrative and successful enterprise, according to Kaufman, one would have to look back five years to the American financial crisis.


In a post he wrote for Wired, Kaufman writes, "The unemployment rate for those earning less than $20,000 is now 21 percent, nearly matching the rate for all workers during the 1930s Great Depression. Amid these sobering headlines, you can't blame American workers for despairing over their professional lives."

"Yet," he writes, "there are glimmers of hope. Slowly but surely, a revolution is taking shape -- an entirely different kind of economy. The labor force of new entrepreneurs, which we call the Gig Economy, is growing rapidly around the world and could soon represent as much as 50 percent of the U.S. workforce."

"It could be the force that saves the American worker."

Kaufman's confidence does not seem to be unwarranted.

On June 4th, 2013 when Fiverr completely reinvented itself - allowing sellers to charge up to $500 for 'gigs' as opposed to only $5 - it was with the purposes of expanding the perpetually expanding 'gig economy'. "The new Fiverr is a reflection of the shift from an outdated work model to the new entrepreneur," Kaufman said in a statement. "We will continue to follow this passion and drive this movement forward."

Fiverr also added analytics and tools that allow users' individual gigs develop into fully functional, fully profitable businesses.

Continue reading on Page 2

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