It was announced this morning that Perth based marketing consultant and travel technology entrepreneur Leigh Pember would be the new city manager of Elance-oDesk for Perth. Although a quick search has found that he began the role in October, with things presumably about to amp up now that he has become a bit more familiar with the role.
Perhaps best known for his current startup Travel Eggs, a digital tour guide application for mobile, Pember, an already active member of the Perth startup scene for around six years, says he is really looking forward to getting to help entrepreneurs even further via this new position.
“I have a real passion and enthusiasm for local start-ups, and this role will allow me to have a direct and positive impact. I look forward to helping West Australian entrepreneurs grow their business through new technology and new ways of working” said Pember.
Elance-oDesk is currently the world’s largest online workplace for freelancers; and over the last 12 months, has seen registrations on the platform grow by 32% and job postings increase by 52%.
Locally Elance-oDesk is headed up by Country Manager, Kyri Theos, and now has four dedicated City Managers looking after Melbourne and Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane and now Perth. Theos says that the opportunity for Perth startups and small businesses to harness the global talent pool is immense.
“We are thrilled to appoint someone in Western Australia locally to support businesses with their hiring needs. There is a strong start-up ecosystem emerging in Perth with the support of some active entrepreneurs, co-working spaces, meetup groups and accelerators,” Theos said.
“The city is well placed to reinvest the wealth it has generated through energy and resources into fast-growth industries, tech start-ups, and innovative SMEs. However finding the talent needed to scale such businesses – especially tech talent – is challenging due to the city’s geographic isolation. We know this because the top skills in demand by Western Australian businesses are PHP, HTML, WordPress and graphic design. This is why we see a great opportunity for Elance-oDesk here.”
This year alone, freelancers using Elance-oDesk are expected to earn more than $900 million dollars on the platform, it should also be noted that this freelancer talent pool come from almost every single country from around the world. As reported previously on Startup Daily, many companies in Australia often use the platform to work with creative freelancers in the video space from the United States because of the fast internet and download and upload speeds they have access to.
According to today’s media release, Leigh will be highly visible in the Perth business community, networking, attending meetups, speaking at and even hosting his own events. “Leigh’s in-depth knowledge of the local start-up scene and its unique issues – having worked in the sector for six years – will be a great asset to the Elance-oDesk team and our West Australian clients,” Theos said.