Ogram, a platform to enable demand and supply matching for part-time on-location work has raised US$870,000 in its Pre-Series A equity round.
- Ogram has served over 450 businesses and individual clients in the UAE, with over 1,050 active service providers placing over 2,000 jobs per month.
- They solve staffing challenges such as limited access to reliable staff, lengthy and costly onboarding processes for temporary workers, and a lack of availability of staff at short notice.
- Investor Global Ventures believe that embracing flexible work and upskilling the workforce especially in the current climate will be the future of work in the region.
Read the full press release below.
Ogram, a UAE-based “human-cloud” platform, announced it completed a US$870,000 Pre-Series A equity round by Global Ventures. With this new investment round, Ogram will continue to scale its business in the UAE.
Ogram’s “human-cloud” platform offers on-demand temporary staffing solutions for on-site manpower, acting as a freelance marketplace connecting temporary workers to jobs in F&B, hospitality, retail, e-commerce, and logistics sectors, amongst others. The company solves staffing challenges such as limited access to reliable staff, lengthy and costly onboarding processes for temporary workers, and a lack of availability of staff at a short notice. Ogram was founded in 2016 by former restaurant operators, Shafiq Khartabil and Karim Kouatly, who experienced similar staffing issues first-hand when they worked in the F&B sector. The two founders were later joined by former banker, Karim Beyhum, in 2019.
The “gig economy” continues to grow globally as expectations of a typical workday change. Driven by a generational and cultural shift towards flexible work-life balance, younger generations are now anticipating multi-job futures. In 2018, the global gig economy generated US$204 billion in gross volume and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 17% to reach a gross volume of US$455 billion by 2021. The gig economy presents a compelling alternative to full-time staff, allowing employers to efficiently manage their manpower needs through seasonal business cycles while enabling freelancers to control their work schedule and income.
Since inception, Ogram has served over 450 businesses and individual clients in the UAE, with over 1,050 active service providers placing over 2,000 jobs per month. Ogram’s app and website will provide customers with a seamless service, from the booking experience, to automated clock-in/clock-out timesheets, to direct staff payment through individual online wallets. Ogram is focused on providing its service providers flexible and fulfilling opportunities, creating a framework to pursue career progression through part-time work.
“We are thrilled to partner with Ogram as they pioneer the regional flexible work economy”, said Noor Sweid, General Partner at Global Ventures. “The current pandemic is challenging existing employment structures and we believe that embracing flexible work and upskilling the workforce to adopt multiple jobs will be the future of work in the region”. Global Ventures will join Ogram’s board following this round of funding.
Shafiq Khartabil, co-founder and CEO, in a statement, says, “We founded the company on the premise of solving a pain point that we often faced in the hospitality sector: inflexible and costly staffing solutions that were not suitable for on-demand business requirements. Our mission is to push the global labour market towards a more flexible modus operandi, shaping the future of the gig economy - with no better place to start than our home in the UAE.”
While platforms targeting freelancers have been present in MENA for some time, Ogram endeavours to be the first UAE player to provide a digital platform that is focused on the on-site workforce. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the benefits of optimised staffing with fewer and more flexible teams, and Ogram provides an infrastructure to manage temporary staff through the current crisis and beyond.