There are so many reasons we like Flinja. First off, their name is short for Freelance Ninja, and any startup with the word Ninja in it rocks. Secondly they are connecting college students with ways to make money by sharing their service as free-lancers with college alumni.
The startup, founded by Rebecca Bahr and Victor Young, is a market place for current college students to find free-lance employment opportunities from alumni. Bahr says they’ve pivoted several times. When they first set out on the free lance ninja concept the platform was closed to each students actual school. Well Bahr, who went to college in Montreal, found it hard to find people to connect with when she needed a service provider in California.
Now, any college student can be a service provider to any college graduate from any school in their network.
Students are utilizing Flinja to offer videography services, photography services, wedding planning services, tutoring in a variety of subjects and anything else that they could do for others for a little money on the side (legal of course).
The hope is that the alumni or college graduates that hire the students as freelancers may be a gateway to more stable employment.
The Flinja marketplace is self contained. When a college graduate is looking for a service provider they can search through Flinja, see a provider (students) feedback and ratings, set up the service, agree to pay and actually finish the transaction. Flinja takes a small percentage from the person hiring, not from the college student.
UCLA was the first school to adopt the Flinja platform. Students are being hired as videographers, editors and tutors.
Flinja is a finalist in the LAUNCHedu competition at SXSWedu in the higher education category. They will appear in the showdown later this week.
Check out our video interview with Bahr below and for more info visit flinja.com