Did you know that nearly 40% of U.S. workers now participate in the gig economy in some form? The uncertainty of the pandemic and its impact on the stability of jobs has only increased the need for workers to augment incomes, as many people like students and retirees only work in the sector part-time. The number of platforms that gig workers can use to earn money is multiplying, but that just means job information and earning data is fragmented, leaving it up to gig workers to guess which opportunities will earn them the most money. Attempting to optimize their working hours or stabilize income is a near-impossible task for independent workers.
It’s this critical problem that Stoovo is solving. Stoovo is an app that connects to existing gig accounts (like Uber, Doordash, Wag, etc.) then uses the power of machine learning to help users meet their financial goals faster and better.
The Nuts & Bolts
Problem: Given that a sizable portion of U.S. workers participate in the gig economy, either through primary or secondary jobs, there is a significant need to help workers maximize their time and income. Gig workers need help answering questions such as: should I choose to work Doordash or Instacart today? What time of day do rideshares yield higher pay per ride? Are people nearby earning more money by doing one platform over another?
There are a few platforms consolidating information from Uber and Lyft, however, the gig economy is now far deeper than managing two rideshare apps to optimize time and income fully.
Solution: Stoovo is an AI/ML platform for gig jobs that offers crucial data and guidance on the best opportunities to meet a user’s financial goals. The app helps identify where gig workers should go to maximize income, when to work to optimize time, and what platforms to use to achieve their financial goals. Specific features include:
- The ability to enter an earning goal, set up a skills profile, and identify the perfect route to achieve it.
- See progress status of earning goals at the end of each week
- Integrate with platforms to identify potential earning opportunities through other gig or retail jobs available in the market that match a users skills.
- Cash advances via Stoovo card to smooth over income instability
- Tools to manage taxes
Stoovo collects data via API integrations with various gig platforms and couples it with other third-party data, such as airport data, job postings, and more.
How 500 Met Stoovo
The Stoovo team reached out to us directly, and we immediately saw that the founders had identified a unique solution for the large and ever-growing gig economy. Two of Stoovo’s co-founders have known each other for over a decade from college and growing up in Haiti. The founding team also bonded over their personal experience of the difficulty of navigating gig and part-time jobs during their college years, seeing firsthand how fees and rates can greatly affect take home earnings, making workers feel exploited and frustrated.
CEO Hantz Fevry was previously a Technical Program Manager at Google and led efforts in AI speech recognition, training and scaling in hardware devices. Before that, he was the co-founder and CEO of I.Trade International, a text-based early warning system for earthquakes in Haiti, where he negotiated a $3 million deal with the Chinese government. Notably, during his lunch breaks at Google, Hantz also took up gig jobs to continue validating the mission behind Stoovo. He’d drive and pick up food delivery orders, experiencing eye-opening issues like waiting 30 minutes for a gig only to get paid $4, almost always making less than minimum wage for his time.
Semih Korkmaz is Stoovo’s Technical Lead and Architect, with a background as an Automation Engineer, Data Science Specialist, and Software Engineer. Leading business development for Stoovo is Pierre Mombeleur, formerly a Project Manager for Google Assistant (on the Speech Data Operations Team), where he managed automated speech recognition data ops and created human-supervised datasets to train and improve Google’s ML models.
We’re especially excited that Stoovo is working towards several goals that match our ESG investing criteria. They are focused on helping create quality jobs and economic growth (UN Sustainable Development Goal 8), supporting the marginalized and disadvantaged (UN Sustainable Development Goal 10), and reducing poverty (UN Sustainable Development Goal 1).
With COVID-19 impacting tens of millions of jobs, many being low-income or part-time, we expect to see an increase in demand for gig work. Stoovo is poised to help support both existing gig workers and new entrants.
Beyond that, independent work is here to stay, and Stoovo is designed to be an essential part of any independent worker’s life. We think Stoovo will be as indispensable to gig workers as Google Maps is to driving directions.
Future of Stoovo
We’re excited to back Stoovo as they continue to roll out their services from their initial market in California to states across the US, with New York and Florida up next. As the company grows, watch for more tools to help secure financial security, such as savings, insurance, and more.
You can learn more about Stoovo at: https://www.stoovo.com.
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