Eddie Lou is the CEO and Co-Founder of Shiftgig, a mobile, two-sided labor marketplace connecting large venues in the service and hospitality industries with locally available and previously vetted hourly workers. Shiftgig is one of the leaders in the gig economy, acting as a technology bridge connecting millions of workers with millions of shifts.
Shiftgig has raised $35M in venture funding from many local VCs including Chicago Ventures, Pritzker Group Venture Capital, and Corazon Capital.
Before founding Shiftgig, Eddie was a general partner with OCA Ventures, where he invested in software, consumer internet, and business services companies.
In This Episode You Will Learn:
- Why Eddie started Shiftgig after being a venture capitalist for many years
- Who are the people working in the gig economy
- What have been their most interesting gigs
- How they got their first customers
- How they pivoted away from their social network idea
- How they dealt with a business model that wasn't working and struggling to raise capital
- Eddie’s keys to building a two-sided marketplace
- What he’s learned as a VC that has benefited him as an entrepreneur
- Why he would like more series B investors in Chicago
- Why he would like to see more risk taking from executives
- Why Shiftgig acquired BookedOut
- What's the future of the gig economy
- What's next for Shiftgig
- Why you shouldn't be afraid to talk about your idea
- What's the best way to reach out and cultivate potential mentors
A Few of Eddie's Favorite Books:
- The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz
- Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance
- Bevy: a Chicago startup delivering everything you need, but don’t want to own, for amazing experiences. Own Less. Live More.