Matching Experts to Clients with twago

By David Knight |

As a freelancer, it can sometimes be frustrating knowing that there is plenty of work out there, but you just don’t know how to find it. That has been made a lot easier by online marketplace twago – which has recently added peace of mind over money to its award-winning service.

Founded in 2009, twago is an online platform which brings together clients with the experts they need in services ranging from programming, graphic and web design to translation and research – all services that can be provided from anywhere in the world. It is available in German, Spanish, Italian and English, and its target group is predominantly small and medium sized businesses which can profit from all the advantages of outsourcing. Since it was launched, twago has seen more than 3,400 projects, and there are currently around 114,000 experts on the books.

And now it has become the first European freelancer marketplace with an escrow service. “It is important to us to provide the possibility for our users to secure their co-operations when working online,” said Gunner Berning, co-founder and CEO of twago. “With twago safePay we have set a new benchmark in regard to security in online business between clients and international providers.”

Clients can use twago’s safePay service to pay their experts securely. At the beginning of the project, the client transfers payment to an independent, third-party escrow account. The money is only released when the client confirms that the project has been successfully completed. Clients benefit from the elimination of risky upfront payments to often unknown providers before starting the project, while freelancers know their money has been set aside and that the so-called “black sheep” amongst the providers won’t simply fail to pay up.

“The programmer or designer will only start working after receiving a notification that the project payment is securely stored in the independent escrow account,” Berning added. “This allows both contractual parties to begin their business relationship in as relaxed a manner as possible.” If there is any disagreement between client and provider about the work done, twago offers an optional mediation between both parties.

Silvia Foglia is one of more than 30 people who work for twago, based out of their headquarters in Berlin. Silvia, twago’s country manager for Italy, spoke to Silicon Allee at our July meet up about the rapid rise the company is undergoing. “We are growing fast in every country we are in. We have reached a very high number of experts, with more than 100,000 professionals like programmers etc. In Italy alone, we have 100 projects a month. We are consistently growing by 20 percent every month.”