Elance + oDesk = One Giant Freelancing Company

Elance and oDesk have decided to merge,though the deal is not finalized yet the merger is expected to close in Q1 of 2014 given certain closing conditions are satisfied. The new company is touted to have a community of about eight million freelancers — about five million from oDesk and three million from Elance.

via VentureBeat

oDesk and Elance will operate separately and Elance CEO Fabio Rosati will become chief executive of the new enterprise.The blog post by oDesk CEO promises superior job and freelancer recommendations over time,tools for more successful hiring, seamless online collaboration, better mobile support and freelancer skills development will happen as a result of the merger.

This merger is shows the significant change industry is going through, just last year Freelancer bought vworker.The company expects to transform the industry and become what Apple and Amazon are to music and retail.With these lofty goals this can also be seen as a step towards an IPO.

Gary Swart CEO of oDesk will now be playing the role of strategic adviser.Here is what he has to say about company’s market fit :

How does this company fit into the overall market for hiring and staffing?
Global staffing is a $422 billion market (according to Staffing Industry Analysts) that we believe is ripe for reinvention. Online work, any type of work that can be done via the Internet, is an emerging sector within it that SIA predicts will reach $5 billion by 2018.

You can read about it here. This for sure is a big news in Freelance world however, its implications are yet to be seen.