Week of December 16, 2018 — This Week in the Gig Economy

werkapp is a platform that helps companies find meaningful matches with general labour workers, at the click of a button

In this publication of This Week in the Gig Economy, we’re covering topics ranging from the large trends in the Global Labour Market and the latest developments with large gig economy companies. Without further ado:

Gig Economy Development

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Uber loses the landmark case ! — Xmas present for workers?

The UK courts have ruled against Uber in the groundbreaking fight. The British Employment Tribunal rules that drivers should be classified as ‘workers’ with access to paid holidays, sick pay and, minimum wage.

The ruling radically disrupts Uber’s business model, and the GMB union estimates drivers could each be owed as much as 18,000 British pounds ($31,700) in back pay and entitlements.

This decision could have worldwide ramifications as Uber drivers elsewhere in the world will be seeking to get similar payouts and benefits.

Flexible Car-Leasing app raises $500M in equity and $1B in debt

SoftBank Group Corp. just led a $385 million funding round for Fair — a flexible-leasing app that makes cars more accessible to Uber drivers and other gig-economy workers.

Fair, led by TrueCar Inc. co-founder Scott Painter, lets customers lease a used vehicle for however long they want. The company runs a credit check off an applicant’s driver’s license. Users can then select cars from a network of 3,000 local dealers that are listed along with monthly payment amounts. The car can be returned with five days’ notice, and there’s no traditional financing process needed because Fair maintains ownership of the vehicle.

“We’re not lending ride-share drivers a big pile of cash and hoping they pay us back,” Painter said. “We’re giving them access to a vehicle, and we require a form of payment upfront.”

Fair has raised a total of $500 million in equity from investors including Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz, Penske Automotive Group Inc., and BMW iVentures. It’s raised $1 billion in debt from investment banks and, a mobility fund created by venture firm Sherpa Capital. Last month, AutoNation Inc., the largest dealer chain in the U.S., said it would supply vehicles to Fair.

New Trends in the Gig World

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Wells Fargo debut app for Uber drivers and, other gig workers

Gig workers won’t have to do mental math anymore. Wells Fargo’s new banking app will handle that. The app is designed for the income volatility that comes with driving for Uber, delivering for Postmates or working other gig-economy jobs.

The Sans-Fransico bank named the app ‘Greenhouse’ — it allows consumers to simplify their bills and, make it easier to see how much money they have to spend by maintaining two balances. One balance is for money set aside to pay bills and the other is for spending, which can be done through a debit card.

The app grew out of the bank’s extensive research of how customers handle their finances, especially those living on volatile incomes.

The app is initially available in California, Texas, Florida, Washington, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and New York with plans to roll out the app nationwide soon.

Labour Market Update

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Move over, Millennials; It’s Gen Z’s time

In 2019, Generation Z will outnumber Millenials. For the first time in modern history “Five generations will be working side-by-side.” Gen Z — those born from 1997 onward — will become 30% of the global population and 20% of the global workforce.

So What?

According to the “Freelancing in America” report by Upwork, Gen Z is the most freelancing-inclined generation, and freelancing by choice more than any other generation: Nearly half of adult working Gen Z’s freelanced last year.

For more on Gen Z freelancing, read this report.

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