11 months ago I posted asking “What is the reason no one is competing with UpWork?”. Today we are announcing our Series A!

Reposting a redacted version because previous post got removed for mentioning product identifying details.

11 months ago I posted on r/startups asking What is the reason no one is competing with UpWork?.

It has been a crazy year since!

I've moved to SF.

I met my co-founder during COVID.

When we realized that our goals were aligned we've committed to building this together.

From there on we'd meet every morning, share breakfast, brainstorm on the whiteboard (very old school I know), work together, & take long walks way past sunset.

Our friendship grew stronger and so did our conviction about the size of the opportunity.

And once we realized how big this thing could be, we started recruiting our engineers, designers, community team, … all around the idea of giving everyone the freedom and opportunity to work independently.

We've hired a ton of extraordinarily talented & caring people. We've raised our pre-seed, seed and series A. We've are building an amazing product using an amazing technology stack.

[redacted]

Today I am the happiest I've ever been, working with the greatest team in the world, solving a problem I deeply care about. We just had our (mostly remote) launch party, and I just wanted to share this excitement with r/startups and encourage everyone to never give up if you are truly convinced about something. 😊

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

11 months ago I posted asking “What is the reason no one is competing with UpWork?”. Today we are announcing our Series A!

11 months ago I posted on /r/startups asking What is the reason no one is competing with UpWork?.

It has been a crazy year since!

I've moved to SF.

I met my co-founder during COVID.

When we realized that our goals were aligned we've committed to building this together.

From there on we'd meet every morning, share breakfast, brainstorm on the whiteboard (very old school I know), work together, & take long walks way past sunset.

Our friendship grew stronger and so did our conviction about the size of the opportunity.

And once we realized how big this thing could be, we started recruiting our engineers, designers, community team, … all around the idea of giving everyone the freedom and opportunity to work independently.

We've hired a ton of extraordinarily talented & caring people. We've raised our pre-seed, seed and series A. We've are building an amazing product using an amazing technology stack.

Our platform is called Contra, and today we are sharing the first preview on ProductHunt. With today’s release, we are giving people the tools to describe their proudest career moments, publicly thank the people with whom they’ve worked with, and begin accepting inquiries for future opportunities.

This is the first Contra drop of many that will shape the new prfessional ntwork for your independent journey. A zero commission alternative to the existing freelancing platforms.

Today I am the happiest I've ever been, working with the greatest team in the world, solving a problem I deeply care about. We just had our (mostly remote) launch party, and I just wanted to share this excitement with /r/startups and encourage everyone to never give up if you are truly convinced about something. 😊

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

The somewhat boring reason it appears that Robinhood yanked trading on some securities

After enduring a day’s worth of taking a beating across social media, government, and the various app stores of the mobile world, Robinhood took to its own blog and CEO’s Twitter account to explain why it had halted trading of some stocks earlier today.

That Robinhood had restricted trading in a number of securities was bombshell news after the consumer trading platform had become synonymous with not only a rise in retail investing, but also a risky wager by some individual investors to push shares of heavily-shorted companies, including GameStop, AMC and others higher. Speculation that Robinhood was limiting the trading ability of those users at the behest of, pick your poison, Citadel, the US government, hedge funds, Janet Yellen, or others, ran rampant.

But none of it was true – at least according to Robinhood’s telling. In its post, Robinhood wrote that (emphasis TechCrunch):

[a]mid this week’s extraordinary circumstances in the market, we made a tough decision today to temporarily limit buying for certain securities. As a brokerage firm, we have many financial requirements, including SEC net capital obligations and clearinghouse deposits. Some of these requirements fluctuate based on volatility in the markets and can be substantial in the current environment. These requirements exist to protect investors and the markets and we take our responsibilities to comply with them seriously, including through the measures we have taken today.

That reads like Robinhood ran low on capital and had to make some hard decisions, quickly. The securities its users wanted to trade likely generated the highest capital obligations given how volatile they proved and how long it takes for trades to settle, so Robinhood had to shut off some trades to stay on the right side of its capital needs. (Not great, not terrible?)

Reporting from Bloomberg indicates that Robinhood “tapped at least several hundred million dollars” from credit lines today makes sense in this context. As does the unicorn’s decision to allow for some trading of the afore-limited securities in the near future (“starting tomorrow, we plan to allow limited buys of these securities,” the company wrote); now reloaded with more capital, Robinhood can afford to let its users get back, somewhat, to business.

Of course Robinhood could have been more clear about all of this earlier in the day. Instead, unfairly or not, it became the face of theoretical corruption and other nefarious forces. (Here’s a tip, if your theory sounds like it could fit inside the Qanon orbit, try again?)

Nothing is settled. Congress has its hackles up. Other trading platforms had to suspend trading in GameStop and other stocks for a spell as well. Social media is pissed. Some Robinhood users were forced to liquidate positions. And somehow GameStop closed the day worth more than $ 196 per share. And after-hours it is up $ 72.40, or 37.40% to $ 266 per share.

Who knows what comes next. But grains of salt, please, as we continue this bizarre adventure.

Startups – TechCrunch

Trying To Reason With Returns Season: 51 Percent Of Consumers Would Keep Goods For Discounts – pymnts.com

Trying To Reason With Returns Season: 51 Percent Of Consumers Would Keep Goods For Discounts  pymnts.com
“startups when:1d” – Google News

Is “because we have too much investor interest” a valid reason for increasing valuation?

We have floated a number around for our current round of investment as a number we are looking for, and one investor wants to talk more about the valuation. Part of the reason why we have a higher valuation is because there is such a long backlog of investors who want to invest but couldn't get into the previous round. They are now looking to get into this round. But to fit everyone in (even after being selective) would be giving up too much of the company.

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

Regional connectivity: Thai Union highlights food tech collaboration opportunities as reason for basing new ASEAN arm in Singapore – FoodNavigator-Asia.com

Regional connectivity: Thai Union highlights food tech collaboration opportunities as reason for basing new ASEAN arm in Singapore  FoodNavigator-Asia.com
“startups when:1d” – Google News