oDesk to Merge with Elance, Creating One Giant Freelance Market


Here’s another merger announcement, I just got an email announcing the merger of Elance and Odesk (I would assume that all oDesk and eLance user received similar email).

Odesk CEO Gary Swart said that oDesk just signed an agreement to merge with Elance. Terms and Financial details were not disclosed, Gary Swart said that both eLance and oDesk will continue to operate as a separate entity, though a combined operating appears to be in the works.

The email also explains that the merger is still not official, not until all closing conditions are met which will be within the next four months.

Here’s the full text of the email from oDesk CEO Gary Swart.


I’m thrilled to announce that we have signed an agreement to merge with Elance! We couldn’t be more excited and wanted to take this opportunity to share what this means for you.

First things first—you can continue to work with your clients on oDesk just as before. The existing websites, and, will continue to operate as two separate platforms.

Why, then, are we putting the two companies together?

The answer is pretty simple: we think we can do a better job for you this way. Both companies are inspired by a similar vision of delivering the best online work experience possible.

The merger has not yet closed, but here are the kinds of things you can look forward to:

  • Significant technology investments. This includes tools for more successful job applications, seamless online collaboration, better mobile support and freelancer skills development.
  • Higher quality results. With our combined expertise in engineering and data science, you will enjoy a host of quality improvements, such as superior job recommendations over time.
  • Participation in how we evolve. There’s never been a better time to have your voice heard, and we are committed to integrating the changes most important to you. Please email me personally at with your likes, dislikes, suggestions, and comments about oDesk—and about Elance if you’ve tried it, too. We’ll reflect your feedback in future innovations and share back what you’ve taught us in an upcoming blog post.

This Q&A should help answer any questions you may have. And please keep in mind that the merger won’t be official until we meet all closing conditions, probably about four months from now. In the meantime, you have my promise that we will work harder than ever to make sure that YOU, our freelancers, truly love the way you work!

Kind regards,

Gary Swart
oDesk CEO

The combined company of Odesk and eLance, will now more than 8 million freelancers and 2 million business customers in more than 180 countries, generating at least $750 million in yearly billings this 2013. The merger will also make the combined company the top destination for freelancer, next to

Source: PandoDaily