|47 US cities, 4 UK cities, 1 Canadian city (October 2018)|
TaskRabbit is an American online and mobile marketplace that matches freelance labor with local demand, allowing consumers to find immediate help with everyday tasks, including cleaning, moving, delivery and handyman work. Founded in 2008 by Leah Busque, the company has received $37.7 million in funding to date and currently has tens of thousands of vetted, background-checked "Taskers" available to help consumers across a wide variety of categories. Busque founded TaskRabbit when she had no time to buy dog food, basing it on the idea of "neighbors helping neighbors".
The precursor of TaskRabbit was RunMyErrand, which was launched in 2008 in Boston, Massachusetts with the first 100 "runners". In 2009, Tim Ferriss became an advisor to the firm after meeting Busque at Facebook's startup incubator, fbFund. The firm accumulated $1.8 million in seed funding from venture capital firms, and hired the company's first full-time employee, Brian Leonard, a software engineer with whom she had worked at IBM.
In April 2010, Busque changed the name of the company from RunMyErrand to TaskRabbit. By June 2010, Busque and team moved across the country and opened operations in the San Francisco Bay Area. One year later, in May 2011, TaskRabbit closed a $5 million Series A financing round from Shasta Ventures, First Round Capital, Baseline Ventures, Floodgate Fund, Collaborative Fund, 500 Startups, and The Mesh author Lisa Gansky. At that time, the firm had 13 employees and 2,000 participating "TaskRabbits". Within the next year, the firm expanded from Boston and the San Francisco Bay Area to New York City, New York; Chicago, Illinois; Los Angeles, California; and Orange County, California.
In July 2011, TaskRabbit launched an app which allowed users to post a task with an iPhone. In October 2011, Busque hired Eric Grosse, the co-founder and former president of Hotwire.com, as the firm's new CEO so she could focus on product development. In December 2011, TaskRabbit received an additional $17.8 million in a Series B round of funding. At the time, the firm had 35 employees and generated $4 million in business each month.
In 2012, Busque reassumed the role of CEO, with Gross staying on with the company’s board of directors, advising on strategy and operations. In January 2013, the company hired Stacy Brown-Philpot, former Google Ventures Entrepreneur-in-Residence and a veteran leader of global operations at Google, as the company’s first COO.
In March 2013, a new tool for “TaskRabbit Business" was introduced which allowed businesses to hire temporary workers from the TaskRabbit users, with a 26 percent commission.
The company launched its first international market in London in November 2013. Because of declines both in bids and in completed and accepted tasks in the U.S., the company chose to test a new system in London; instead of an eBay-inspired bidding model, Taskers would set their own rates and schedules, and when a new job was posted that matched their profile the platform would send them an alert. The first to respond got the job. In London, the results were positive: almost all the company's metrics improved, and the average amount of money that individual Taskers on the platform were taking home increased.
On June 17, 2014, TaskRabbit announced and began implementing this change in all markets. The new version was officially released on July 10, 2014, and was met with significant backlash from the Tasker community. TaskRabbit incorporated some of the feedback into an updated version of its app that launched on January 1, 2015, and has since experienced considerable growth. In 2014, TaskRabbit received 4,000 applications to be a Tasker. In 2015, that number grew to 15,000.
Acquisition by IKEA
In September 2017, the IKEA Group announced it would acquire TaskRabbit, which would continue to operate independently.  IKEA launched a furniture assembly service from TaskRabbit in March 2018.
In April 2018, the company was affected by a data breach.
In September 2018, IKEA announced to launch TaskRabbit in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal in late 2018. At present, TaskRabbit is available in around 45 cities across the United States and Britain. As of October 2018, the service had launched in Toronto and its Vancouver launch was planned for the following month.
Over 60,000 independent workers use the TaskRabbit platform. The education level of contractors varies. Out of all the contractors, 70 percent hold bachelor's degrees, 20 percent hold master's degrees, and 5 percent hold a PhD.
Some people have turned their TaskRabbit work into a full-time job.
In popular culture
TaskRabbit was the basis for an episode of season three of Netflix's Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. The service was also parodied in The Simpsons episode "Dad Behavior" as ChoreMonkey, as well as in the iCarly (2021) episode "iGot Your Back" as PostRabbit.
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