Upwork touts $904 million in total value sourced from platform for Q3

Revenue in Q3 rose 32% while the non-GAAP net income per diluted share was $0.04.
Written by Jonathan Greig, Contributor

Online freelance marketplace Upwork reported a mixed Q3 report this afternoon that touted the marketplace's growth in users but noted potential trouble ahead.   

Upwork's measure of the total value of labor sourced in its marketplace called the gross services value rose by 38% in the third quarter to $904 million.

Revenue in Q3 rose 32%, year over year to $128.1 million. Non-GAAP net income was $4.8 million and non-GAAP net income per diluted share was $0.04. Analysts had been modeling an EPS of $-0.1.

Marketplace revenue for the third quarter of 2021 was $117.8 million, a year-over-year increase of 34%. Managed Services revenue grew 19% year-over-year to $10.4 million for the third quarter of 2021.

The report sent Upwork shares falling by 5.32% in late trading. 

Upwork said it now has 752,000 Active Clients, which it defined as clients who had spend-activity during the 12 months preceding the date of measurement. The number represents a 25% year-over-year increase. 

GSV per active client increased 12% year-over-year to approximately $4,400, according to the report.


CEO Hayden Brown said the company is increasing its investment in brand marketing to "help businesses and talent learn how Upwork can help them achieve their goals and build their businesses." 

"We expect to invest as much as $17 million in the fourth quarter, up from $8 million in the third quarter, in an effort to raise our unaided brand awareness and shift perceptions. Because of this investment, we expect fourth-quarter 2021 adjusted EBITDA to be a loss of between $(2) million and $(4) million and full-year 2021 adjusted EBITDA to be between $18 million and $20 million," Brown said. 

For the current quarter, the company sees revenue between $130 million and $132 million and raised its full-year 2021 revenue guidance to between $496 million and $498 million.

It expects a non-GAAP basic loss per share to be between $0.03 and $0.05 in Q4.

Upwork unveiled a new "work marketplace" for freelancers in May and this week announced a Virtual Talent Bench allowing companies to create rosters of frequent collaborators. 

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