Once upon a time, if you needed a professional handyman or ran a small business and wanted to drum up work, a connection would be made in the local newspaper's classified ads. Those days are mostly over, even as the growing gig economy makes freelancers and small businesses more flexible and prevalent than ever.
Taking those connections to the next step is why Jeff Tennery co-founded Charlottesville, Va.-based startup Moonlighting, and as he explains on this week's DC Inno Beat Podcast, demand is only getting bigger.
"We offer a platform for the connections like newspaper classifieds, but there's even more to it," Tennery told me ahead of the podcast. "There's so many people out there with skills to offer and people who [want to] hire them."
Moonlighting is the developer of a mobile app that serves as a marketplace where people can find small businesses and freelancers looking for short-term work in activities like gardening, graphic design, dog walking or even a wedding officiant. The startup recently closed a $2.3 million funding round led some of the biggest media syndicates in the country.
There's an attraction on both sides of the equation for what Tennery calls the "Swiss Army Knife for freelancers." Users can find trustworthy connections, which includesa payment system that processes payment quickly for the freelancers, and more ways for them to make money.