Jeff Tennery - Empowering Millions of Independent Workers Worldwide in the Gi...
Jeff Tennery is the founder and CEO of Moonlighting. He was recently featured on WCKG Chicago Radio and the Business Innovators Radio Net...
The growth of freelancing worldwide is staggering. In the US alone, freelancers make up 35% of the current workforce, some 55 million workers who collectively earned $1 trillion in 2016. That number is predicted to reach 43% by 2020, with some analysts citing that figure at 80% of the global workforce by 2030.
While the freelance economy is booming, participants are at the mercy of flawed and individually-centralized job marketplaces. These traditional marketplaces struggle to engage new members and eliminate fraud, all while controlling freelancer earnings by setting pay rates, taking a steep cut of earnings, charging for bids, and withholding or even denying payment. As a result, freelancers are powerless to control their personal data and retain their full earnings. Conversely, employers have limited access to consistent, trusted, and verified worker data, putting them at the risk of losing money and wasting time in the process.
The Solution: Moonlighting
A few years ago, we started Moonlighting to help empower people everywhere to pursue the career they always wanted, to lead a better life, and to do work that they truly love. We wanted to create a free and open marketplace that gives everyone a shot at getting discovered and building their own workplace independence. This mission has turned into a movement, spreading quickly throughout the country and soon, across the globe.
Moonlighting removes the middleman between employers and freelancers, connecting them directly to empower on-demand employment. In addition, it offers a suite of powerful SaaS tools that simplify communications and small business accounting.
With the upcoming blockchain integration, Moonlighting will decentralize worker profiles (including reviews, recommendations, education, licensing credentials) and allow freelancers to port their profile to any employment marketplace in the gig economy.
Thanks to the peer-to-peer model, platform commission fees are eliminated.
Moonlighting provides a full turnkey solution with a suite of tools including online portfolios, instant chat to accept direct hire requests, proposals, invoicing, and online payments.
Trust is a major problem for freelancers and employers. With the upcoming blockchain integration, once a blockchain profile is created on Moonlighting, independent workers will no longer have to create and maintain multiple online profiles. They can simply port their profile and earned reviews to other participating platforms providing employers with more consistent and accurate ratings and profiles. No more guessing which source(s) to trust – Moonlighting blockchain user profiles will make hiring online safe and trusted.
The blockchain integration will allow for faster payments via instant payments through cryptocurrencies.
Blockchain technology also supports tokenization and smart contracts that create new incentives for participation in Moonlighting and the freelance economy. The upcoming Moonlighting Rewards Program will incentivize freelancers and clients to act fairly and professionally, while building a stronger marketplace.
How it works for employers:
Search for the type of worker needed or simply post a job
Qualified freelancers receive job notifications and will begin to respond instantly
Hire the worker you choose and pay securely right through Moonlighting
How it works for workers:
Freelancers create a professional online portfolio
Search jobs and respond to direct hire requests
Accept job requests and receive online payments with no commission fees
Since launch, Moonlighting has gained great traction among freelancers and employers across a variety of verticals, from graphic designers to dog walkers, and data scientists to cake decorators. We’ve expanded rapidly, building a user base in all 50 states.
In April 2016, Moonlighting began monetizing its freelancer advertising services and SaaS tools, creating the Boost membership, while also monetizing enterprise employer job postings to create a 30-day job posting product called Blast.
In July 2017, Moonlighting partnered with leading recruitment platform, Recruitology, to accelerate recruitment advertising revenue generated through third-party sales of the Moonlighting Blast product. As a result of these monetization efforts, Moonlighting has generated more than $750K in revenue to date.
Moonlighting currently monetizes both the employee and employer sides of the marketplace:
$40-$100 30-day job listings are available for recruiters and small businesses. These job posts enable these users to instantly connect with the best professional flexible, part-time, and freelance candidates to source, recruit, and hire instantly.
$10/mo per user subscription-based offer is available for freelancers and small businesses. This subscription provides promotion within the Moonlighting marketplace, unlimited use of SaaS tools, unlimited direct communication with potential employers, 0% processing fees on payments received through Moonlighting, and will soon include blockchain verified user profiles.
Additionally, we keep 5% commission of funds raised through Moon$hot Stories.
Moonlighting’s freelance economy market is substantial and only getting bigger, with potential customers that include 7.5 billion freelance professionals worldwide, large and small companies, recruiters and sole-proprietors looking to hire. By 2020, freelancers workers are expected to make up 43% of the US workforce. By 2030, freelancers will account for 80% of the global workforce. If Moonlighting can capture just 1% of this market, it's a multi-billion dollar opportunity.
In the near term, Moonlighting is focused on expanding to two new markets, Canada and the United Kingdom, through partnerships secured with the top news media companies in each country. With this expansion, Moonlighting is on track to grow its user base to 500M+ and generate $100M by 2021.
Our competitors include traditional job marketplaces like LinkedIn, Thumbtack and Upwork. Moonlighting is the only company integrating blockchain technology to build a safer and more secure hiring platform.
To date, Moonlighting has raised $6.3M from local Charlottesville, Virginia Angel investor Network (CAN), New Richmond Ventures (NRV), and news media companies McClatchy (NYSE: MNI), Gannett (NYSE: GCI), and Tribune Publishing (NASDAQ: TRNC).
Founder & CEO
Jeff Tennery is the founder & CEO of Moonlighting and has spent over 25 years in senior executive leadership roles at Verizon, AT&T Wireless, nTelos, and Millennial Media. Prior to founding Moonlighting, Jeff served 7 years as the Senior Vice President, Business Development & Global Monetization for mobile advertising leader Millennial Media. He was responsible for delivering hundreds of millions of dollars annually across 50,000 applications worldwide and played an instrumental role in Millennial Media’s 2012 IPO.
Co-founder & CTO
Ritesh Johar is co-founder & Chief Technology Officer for Moonlighting and architect of the proprietary mobile payments platform that powers the Moonlighting Marketplace. Before he co-founded Moonlighting, Johar excelled as a Technical lead where he designed, built, and managed the platform that generates $1B+ in mobile & online payments for Capital One. With 13+ years of expertise covering various aspects of software architecture, design, development, process and methodology for the Federal Reserve and Thomson Reuters, Johar brings a wealth of digital payments experience to his new venture.
Co-founder & COO
Roy Slater is co-founder & Chief Operating Officer for Moonlighting and an operations and process excellence professional with over 20 years of experience leading UI Design, ROI optimization, and mobile technology development. Before co-founding Moonlighting, Slater served as an operations manager at Capital One Financial, where he managed digital properties with revenues more than $1.5 Billion. Proudly hailing from Claremont, California, Slater has also held positions at Lendingtree.com, and GMAC/Ditech.com.
The smallest investment amount that Moonlighting is accepting.
$25,000 – $1,070,000
Moonlighting needs to raise
before the deadline. The maximum amount Moonlighting is willing
to raise is $1.07M.
Moonlighting needs to reach their minimum funding goal before the deadline.
If they don’t, all investments will be refunded.
The Crowd Safe is an agreement for future equity in the startup,
meaning that it can convert to equity in the future.
The Crowd Safe is an agreement for future equity in the startup, meaning that it can convert to equity in the future.
Moonlighting is one of the fastest growing freelance marketplaces in the world and will be the first scaled hiring platform on the blockchain. The Moonlighting team of seasoned digital executives is well positioned to disrupt the $1T freelance industry with its best in class mobile application. Backed by the three largest news media companies (Gannett NYSE: GCI, Tribune NASDAQ: TRNC, McClatchy NYSE: MNI) Moonlighting has over 650,000 registered users on its platform, generated over $750k in revenue and is showcased in over 150 news media publications including the Chicago Tribune, LA Times, Miami Herald and the USA TODAY.
Moonlighting has been operating since 2014 and has gained the trust of 650,000 users of the platform. The company has generated over $750k in revenues and raised over $6M with strategic and accredited investors.
With a mobile and website enabled marketplace, Moonlighting is currently available everywhere in the U.S. Current expansion plans include Latin America, Spain, U.K., India, Australia, and Canada.
Moonlighting’s solution solves three problems that are not being addressed by incumbents in the recruitment/freelance space:
1. Moonlighting’s User Profiles are being transported to the blockchain to create more trust and safer hiring. Profiles will be more accurate and authentic (reviews, recommendations, education, licensing credentials) generating more trust for the hirer and the freelancer.
2. Moonlighting generates revenues from an affordable subscription model, which appeals to mass audience sizes of 1M or more. Competitors are charging 20-30% of a freelancer’s paycheck, which creates friction and drives users off the platform. Moonlighting’s use of cryptocurrency will allow users to keep 100% of their earnings and Moonlightings rewards program, paid in cryptocurrency, will retain users and keep engagement high.
3. Moonlighting is democratizing the use of freelancer profiles and will allow users to port their profile to any employment marketplace in the gig economy. Users will be able to control the use of their data, which will be more secure and use the Moonlighting profile via single sign-on, saving users from having to register and manager multiple profiles across a highly fragmented gig economy.
The three co-founders have over 60 years of successful digital and financial tech experience and have taken start ups from inception to IPO to strategic acquisition. The team has worked at Verizon, Capital One, AT&T, AOL Lending Tree and the Federal Reserve and partnered with the top media and mobile companies.
Moonlighting is comprised of successful entrepreneurs who have built billion dollar companies and worked as technologists in supporting platform companies manage billions of dollars in mobile/digital transactions. Moonlighting has built a world-class sales distribution strategy via third party partnerships with Gannett, Tribune, McClatchy, Verizon, Monster, Yahoo and over 450 news media sites around the globe including new partnerships with the Johnston Press for UK expansion and Post Media, to bring Moonlighting to Canada.
Moonlighting monetizes both sides of their marketplace with a simple $10 per month subscription called Boost, which helps freelancers stand out and gain more business on the platform. In addition, Moonlighting allows recruiters and staffing companies to post 30 day listing ranging from $40-$100 per month to promote specific jobs.
Tim: We've got some amazing entrepreneurs today, this is gonna be really fun. But before we do, let's see what's happening backstage.
Jeff: Hi, my name's Jeff Tennery. I'm the founder and CEO of Moonlighting; one of the fastest-growing freelance marketplaces in today's gig economy. I live in Charlottesville, Virginia, which is not the mecca of employment.
Jeff: When the market crashed I was scared to death. My wife was pregnant with our fifth child, and I wanted to build something I knew I could use if I ever lost my job, to find work. And I knew that if I could use mobile technology, then I could help people find jobs anytime, anywhere around the world.
Jeff: I'm backed by three publicly-traded companies, we've raised over six and a half million dollars. We built the product, now we're just gonna enhance it with blockchain cryptocurrency.
Jeff: I got a chance to meet Tim a couple of times at some of the bitcoin and blockchain conferences. I actually spent one-on-one time with him and his family. That means a lot to us. We're a four year-old company. It was scary, but we picked the right path, and that's why we have 650,000 viewers on the platform.
Jeff: Welcome to Moonlighting, my name's Jeff Tennery, I'm the founder and CEO of Moonlighting. One of the fastest freelance marketplaces growing in today's gig economy. Back in 2008 when the market crashed, I was deathly afraid of, you know, where I would find my next job. We're based in Charlottesville, Virginia. It's not like a mecca of a ton of employment there, and we built a mobile app that would help people find work very, very quickly. The experience looks and feels a lot like Uber, but we mixed it with a little bit more of LinkedIn and Facebook. What we have is over 650,000 people over the last two and a half years have signed up for Moonlighting. Every type of job you can imagine. We joke we got the fire jugglers, the stilt walkers on this side, and you've got professionals like accountants, attorneys, photographers, DJs.
Jeff: What we're looking to do is expand globally, and we made a decision a year ago to get into blockchain. When you have 650,000 users on your platform, you gotta take care of that data. Gotta make sure that it's authentic, it's real, and that's what blockchain does.
Jeff: This past year we have built our own cryptocurrency, looking to do an ICO. So that's a little bit about Moonlighting and, no, I'm not Bruce Willis. I always crack that joke, it goes over some people's heads. Especially depending on-
Tim: You just glossed over this, "we're doing an ICO". You're trying to connect people and you're using the blockchain to make sure that they're all legitimate. Okay, that's the blockchain. Why are people every gonna buy this coin?
Jeff: There's two use cases; one is being able to do that to pay one another for services, to design a website, to do my taxes. The other piece of it too is we'll be able to have people use the currency so that they can buy premium services. So they can move their way up through our platform, so they get discovered faster, and they are able to get hired very quickly.
Bill: But getting it started, so that people accept the currency, that's a really tough job.
Jeff: Yeah but you know what we have? A jump-start, Bill. It's a great question. 650,000 users that are using our platform-
Bill: How do they appear?
Jeff: You know what? We've been, we're very good at social media marketing. We have partnerships with the news media companies. Not only are they investors, but they also are commercial partners. You'll find Moonlighting in the LA Times, Chicago Tribune, USA Today. In that section where people are looking for employment.
Naveen: What happens, I mean, the reason you do a gig-economy is because I wanna get paid and somehow, you know, feed my family. Having a coin, unless it's tradable and I can get the fiat currency, is not gonna buy me lunch.
Jeff: Well, you can, actually the way it's set up, you can basically use the coin back into Ethereum and still get to fiat and do that as well.
Naveen: But I'm saying, is there good trading? Unless there is a decent amount of trading somebody is willing to do that, it doesn't quite-
Jeff: We have the velocity and the liquidity in the marketplace that's taking place right now. Which again, if you think about it, there's a lot of other gig-
Tim: With that velocity, with your own coin? Or-
Jeff: Not yet. No, we haven't done the coin yet. That's really what we're here to raise funding for. We call it the Moonbit. It's built, we haven't launched it-
Naveen: But this seems to be the tail wagging the dog. I mean what you're saying is, "I wanna clear the cryptocurrency so what can I do?" As opposed to, "I have a problem that needs solving." I mean, crypto is one way of doing it as opposed to saying, "here is the business, here is the problem I'm trying to solve, here are the ten different ways of doing it, and I selected this."
Jeff: I think I need to reverse back on there, maybe a little bit of the nerves of being on here, but we've been around for 4 years. We have created a business. We've had over 49 million dollars that has been transacted on the platform.
Tim: And how much do you get out of that?
Jeff: We changed that model up dramatically again, with understanding our customers. People typically leave gig economies if you're taking too much per paycheck. So, anywhere from 20-30%. So our revenues, we've got a little under a million dollars.
Tim: [crosstalk 00:09:32] Over that 4 years?
Jeff: Yes, correct. Over the last 18 months we've done about 750,000 dollars.
Tim: And somehow, do you think that your token is now going to enhance your existing business? Or are you just using it as a way to raise money?
Jeff: No, actually. We're doing a security token by the way, much different than the utility token. Which you- [crosstalk 00:09:52]
Tim: Well it costs a lot more in legal fees.
Jeff: Well we talked about that I think a few months ago, absolutely.
Jeff: Blockchain is really the solution for that much data on the platform. Being able to make it secure, and also let people use that data where they choose to use it.
Jeff: People could take this Moonlighting profile, that's very similar to LinkedIn, and being able to use it with whatever platform they chose to use it on.
Bill: Wait a minute. LinkedIn is where a bunch of individuals get to know each other.
Jeff: That's how our platform is, it's a mixture of basically LinkedIn meets Venmo.
Jeff: When we started the company back in 2014, our goal was to disrupt LinkedIn. We felt like LinkedIn wasn't connecting, it was connecting people, but people weren't really hiring one another.
Bill: But Moonlighting isn't connecting people.
Jeff: Oh, absolutely. 650,000 people come to our platform and that's connecting. That's people using it for buying and selling- [crosstalk 00:10:35]
Polly: For jobs.
Naveen: It's like Craigslist.
Jeff: We were called Craigslist without the creepiness back in the early days.
Tim: Why are you doing this? Why do you care?
Jeff: Why do I care? I care because I'm a father of five, and in 2008 I was scared out of my mind. My wife was pregnant with our fifth child and I was afraid I was gonna lose my job. So Moonlighting, we started the company by literally, you know, Moonlighting on the side and we wanted to make sure that I had something that I could use. I was in Charlottesville. I couldn't afford to move back to big cities. So we wanted to build something that was ubiquitous, worked anywhere. We've done that very successfully for the last three and a half years, and again, not using cryptocurrency as just a way to circumvent and raise money. We're doing it for the right reasons; for blockchain, and to be able to take this international.
Tim: Well, terrific. Well thank you for coming in to meet the Drapers.
Naveen: Thank you.
Jeff: Thank you. Appreciate it.
Tim: That's terrific.
Jeff: You got it. Thank you so much.
Jeff: I jumped a little too quickly into probably blockchain and cryptocurrency cause I'm so excited about it. I think they felt like I was doing the token sale and working in blockchain for the wrong reasons, which is not the case.
Jeff: I think investors are looking for things that they can trust. And not only is blockchain about trust, but it's about companies you can trust, and people you can trust. All of that comes together really nice with Moonlight and I hope that did resonate with the Drapers.
Jeff: Our goal is to generate 100 million dollar by 2021, and being able to share that revenue with our users and customers. We have 650,000 now, we're calling to get 6 million over the next three years.
Jeff: I'm inviting you, at home, to invest in Moonlight, and to be a part of the biggest revolution in employment over the last 20 years.
Tim: So, let's see what our judges think about Moonlighting. And know that it's not all up to the judges here because you can invest in these companies. We are the only show in the world that allows you to back a start-up from your living room, and you do it just by going to meetthedrapers.com. But first, lets find out from our guest judge ...
Tim: Naveen, is Moonlighting a moonshot?
Naveen: It's definitely not a moonshot, but it's a good idea. This is the old idea of classifieds. It's really, purely an execution play at this point.
Bill: [crosstalk 00:12:50] There must be a lot of competition in this.
Tim: For Yellow Pages, yeah. Absolutely, in fact, you ran a [crosstalk 00:12:57] company who did this-
Naveen: Way back when.
Polly: He seemed like he was operating from a position of fear rather than a passion. You know, like a, "I don't wanna lose my job, life is, I better do this". Instead of, you know, this is, "kind of a dream of mine."
Tim: That's funny, I was thinking the exact same thing on fear. I felt like he came at it from the position of, "I felt like I had to do it 'cause I might lose my job."
Tim: So I was thinking the business itself, there's some potential there. The ICO that he's doing for a new token, I thought was, he's just trying to raise money. I mean, why not just use bitcoin?
Tim: Anyway, so I think what we'll do, is we'll go to the crystal ball. Okay? Okay so we start doing this, Naveen. We just sort of feel the power of the crystal ball. You got the vibe? Okay.
Tim: So, thumbs up. Thumbs down. Thumbs all around.
Polly: Half-measures we can do? 'cause I didn't know the rules there, I might've done a half-measure.
Bill: No rules.
Tim: We're the Drapers.
I met one of the founders today in Charlottesville. Looks like a great company and platform!Michael BenderInvested 1 day ago
I believe in the Gig economy and having a secure platform that simplifies services and payments is brilliant. I’m glad I found this opportunity.David YoderInvested 7 days ago
I invested to make some money (like all of us), but nothings happening. :(Eric HjelmInvested 9 days ago
I think it's a great idea to allow people who use the platform to have an opportunity to invest in the company. Looking forward to downloading the app, and joining in on the Moonlighting journey!Roy MukaiInvested 13 days ago
Great idea!Michael DiberardinoInvested 14 days ago
Interesting in the technology blockchain !Patrice KrauseInvested 19 days ago
I agree that MS LinkedIn is exclusive & that platform & delivery of service offerings are seriously lacking what Moonlighting has the potential to be. I'm interested in becoming involved early on to encourage company growth & to promote its mission.Cheryl GaraldeInvested 23 days ago
Good mission and bussiness modelAndrew BuiInvested 24 days ago
I believe the workforce opportunities of the future will be more and more moonlighters, especially with the emerging robotics and IE industries.Tom WilliamsInvested 29 days ago
Already established .. potential big hitsSagar EkharInvested about 1 month ago
I looked at the growth of use and the popularity of the app. I also liked the implementation of blockchain technology to make others feel more confident when using the product. The presentation was well done and no commission fees is a plus.Alexandro FriasInvested about 1 month ago
I have used similar platforms and found this to be a viable community I currently use myself and wanted to help support it.Eric BowersInvested about 1 month ago
Because this is where the country is headed free lancingXavier WilkinsInvested about 2 months ago
Gig economy is not going awayTimothy ChumaInvested about 2 months ago
I believe the freelance economy will continue to grow during the current information technology age we are in.Mark CassinghamInvested about 2 months ago
Everything is shifting to apps and online, therefore this app creates a simplified way for one to look and find what they are interested.Richard AtibaInvested 2 months ago
I really like the idea as a worker of having much more control over when and where I work. I think it will also eventually catch on in a big way with employers as it gets harder and harder to find good help.Casey MarlandInvested 2 months ago
I am happy to be part of this journeyUtpal DoshiInvested 2 months ago
I believe freelance work would become more popular if workers and job providers had a connecting platform like Moonlighting. This company is aware of its competitors and is well-planned.Jeremy RamseyInvested 3 months ago
I believe in this companyBenson UcheInvested 3 months ago
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