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B:B Exchange: oDesk

Posted on Thursday, Sep 28th 2006

Some of you may recall, during the Dotcom days, B:B Exchanges were a hot new concept, which propelled even the car companies to set up one (Onstar.com). Even John Doerr fell for it, and invested in eLance, which was an exchange for Freelancers.

Well, like many other concepts that are returning with a web 2.0 varnish, one such is oDesk which has just raised $8 Million. Techcrunch reports: We have watched oDesk grow strongly in a space that was previously heavily dominated by both eLance and Guru. oDesk offers a twist on the old model in a market that is desperate for high-quality development and other IT services. oDesk allows it’s customers to track every aspect of projects and jobs that they post to the marketplace, from sourcing the right talent through to managing your relationships with suppliers.

Well, an interesting exercise would be to go through VentureSource and find all the deals that got funded during the Dotcom days, and see for which, the time has finally come.

I have a few in mind, so if you are an entrepreneur looking for an idea, ping me!

This segment is a part in the series : B

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I have a few ideas to bounce it back based on this. Ping me back on my email

Narain Saturday, September 30, 2006 at 12:58 AM PT

I’m not wild about services like guru or odesk. I think it really depends on the complexity and flexibility of your project. If you’re already familiar with the discipline you are contracting then it might be okay. Regardless of how many tools they gave me, I could not effectively manage a php developer.

When we started Repliqa, I hired a respected guy with a ton of experience and gave him the authority to build his team. That’s working out well.

Mark S Saturday, September 30, 2006 at 8:38 AM PT

Hi Sramana,

This W1 v. W2 funding list would be interesting. With regard to the B2B services space, we like a lot of what the Guru’s and Elance’s of this world are doing as marketplaces, however they fall down when they hand buyers off to start the projects. With this in mind we created http://www.paystage.net.
The idea is ‘light weight’ project management and collaboration. Feel free to let us know if it aligns with any of your ‘ideas’.

Dan Saturday, September 30, 2006 at 2:56 PM PT

Dan, You lost me … W1 v W2 is what? My head often reels from acronymns these days :-)
Lightweight Project Management sounds good. My suggestion would be for your to pick a niche segment to go after as a beachhead, for efficient market penetration. If you can actually do partnerships with the eLances and oDesks of the world, and offer your solution as part of their recommended workflow, that may be one such niche. In general, the collaboration space is likely to see a lot of activity going forward, especially cross-border, cross-company collaboration.
Sramana

Sramana Mitra Sunday, October 1, 2006 at 2:45 PM PT

Hi Sramana,

W1 v W2 is my shorthand for your idea around the venture list of funds who bankrolled ideas in the dotcom era, versus the web 2 people putting their hand up now. Thanks for the tip around partnerships we are in the process of developing these relationships now, so its nice to have this validated by you.

Dan

Dan Monday, October 2, 2006 at 4:37 AM PT

Dan,
Also explore Webex as a partnership. Peter Carson is the VP of Biz Dev there. You can tell him I asked you to call.
Good luck,
Sramana

Sramana Mitra Monday, October 2, 2006 at 1:24 PM PT
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