ODesk Raises $15 Million in Funding Round Led by T. Rowe Price

ODesk Corp., a provider of technology for hiring freelance workers remotely, raised $15 million in new funding and named former Expedia Inc. executive Gregory Stanger as its finance chief.

T. Rowe Price Group Inc. (TROW), the Baltimore-based asset manager, led the financing, ODesk said today in a statement. Benchmark Capital, Globespan Capital Partners and Sigma Partners also joined the funding round, which brought the total amount raised by the Redwood City, California-based startup to $44 million.

ODesk’s software is used by more than 300,000 businesses to find, hire and pay contract workers in far-flung locations. The nine-year-old company said today that freelancers hired through its system are earning more than $300 million a year in total. ODesk is using its own technology, and has 230 contractors working remotely, three times the number of people it employs full-time, said Chief Executive Officer Gary Swart.

“We eat our own cooking to get work done,” Swart said in an interview. In addition to its U.S.-based software developers and technical workers, “we have a large support team, located in the Philippines, managed by stay-at-home moms in Texas and Tennessee,” he said.

Stanger will be taking the chief financial officer job after a stint as finance chief at online textbook-rental company Chegg Inc. Stanger previously held the same position at online travel site Expedia, and served on the board of Netflix Inc. (NFLX)

To contact the reporter on this story: Ari Levy in San Francisco at alevy5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net

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