Qwork, Malaysia’s homegrown platform that offers job solutions to both employers and employees alike, announced the closing of an investment from Artem Ventures that will enable the company to expand its offerings to more industries ready for manpower optimisation through the utilisation of gig workers and to create more sustainable benefits for all giggers.
Artem Ventures (Artem) is a VC fund management company (VCMC) that is currently managing a maiden RM45m fund in Malaysia to invest in early-stage fintech and insurtech companies.
Founded in 2017, Qwork was created as a gig community that is financially sustainable and offers job seekers the perks and social benefits that come with full-time employment.
A specialised service that matches skills with the dynamic manpower needs of different businesses, Qwork allows freelancers and part-timers the freedom and independence to work, earn, and learn on their own terms while simplifying workforce management for companies.
Over the past six years, Qwork has worked with over 100,000 gig workers serving clients in 11 countries in Southeast Asia, notably Zalora, Busybees Asia, Dynapack Asia, J&T Express, and Jakel, and has paid out over US$3 million to giggers, saving up to 60% of operational costs for these businesses.
In 2023 alone, Qwork has connected more than 15,000 individuals with companies throughout the region who have clocked in close to 2 million working hours and spent over 280,000 hours working with partners worldwide to upskill its giggers.
“My background in production gave me a keen insight into the tumultuous nature of hiring freelancers and specialists for specific projects and the difficulty that many people face trying to break into a field,” said Muna Munirah, CEO and Co-Founder of Qwork.
“This goes across the board for all industries — every project requires workers who have a certain combination of experiences and skills, but not everyone has the time and resources to reach out to and hire the necessary talents,” she added.
Muna further stated, “That’s what my sister, Dr. Mimi Aminah, and I hope to address with Qwork. We want to close the gap between talented individuals and potential employers while making sure that our giggers are paid well and our clients can save on recruitment.”
In the upcoming years, Qwork hopes to further extend its services to economic powerhouses in Southeast Asia, working with strategic partners in Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines to cater to SMEs and startups in the respective markets.
With the funds raised from Artem Ventures, Qwork hopes to establish its operations in Vietnam, and potentially Thailand, in the next year and double the number of giggers onboarded and upskill training hours by Q4 of 2024.
Qwork also hopes to widen its reach in its existing Malaysian, Indonesian, and Singaporean markets beyond urban spaces to benefit business owners in rural communities — improving local economies and the livelihoods of people throughout the countries.
“We believe the future of work hinges on the infrastructure of the gig economy. Qwork has established itself as a critical ecosystem player in helping enterprises adopt gig workers and ensuring they have equivalent benefits to full-time employees, which encompasses insurance, financial assistance, services, and many others,” said Tunku Omar Asraf, Principal of Artem Ventures.
“This aligns strongly with TIM Ventures’ fund’s objectives in promoting inclusion and social development.”