Thursday, August 5, 2010

EditLift Founder Matt Wise: ‘Cosembling’ a Business Model that Serves

Matt Wise, founder of EditLift, can explain the up side of ADHD like no other. He uses an analogy that involves a lion sleeping uder a tree during daylight hours, and then leaps up to hunt its prey in the darkness. It will only return to the tree when its hunger is satiated. In other words, the lion reserves its strength and energy for only what matters. The lion’s focus is heightened when it is necessary.

Sounds an awful lot like a techpreneur. In fact, it sounds an awful like Matt.

The Florida native and self-professed late bloomer’s focus has taken him from military service to law school and ultimately to the ranks of Internet founder.

His latest venture, EditLift, offers on-demand, cost-efficient, high-quality proofreading and editing services that guarantees a fast turnaround using a software as a service (SaaS) platform. Wise and his colleagues have developed a business model that provides a stream of income for an online community of qualified professional editors and proofreaders who can manage their workloads with the SaaS platform. Users of EditLift have an opportunity to submit their work for a free estimate before they commit to paying the $3.99 per page rate. Simply put, EditLift relies on crowdsourcing to produce outcomes satisfactory to contractors and clients.

EditLift is Wise’s response to the scores of professionals who lost jobs and business during the economic downturn. Considering research on crowdsourcing and the movement towards outsourcing, Wise came up with a plan that created a stream of income for the under employed and unemployed. A sense of community service coupled with a good business acumen informed the concept of EditLift. Matt says,

Historically, there have always been people who work as freelancers. There is a significant percentage of the labor pool that freelances. Basically, we started to look more at writing, editorial and publishing. There was no one vehicle that offered affordable editorial services with a quick turnaround.

But that’s the soft side of the model. Matt calls the most intricate details of his business model “cosembling” or collaborating and assembling. Cosembling began when Wise came together with a team of colleagues, all of whom have skill sets important to developing an Internet property.

He explains it this way,

Cosembling is like incubating. For cosembling, you have to focus on a product or service that requires little capital to build a prototype, and can be launched in a short period of time. We only focus on businesses where you have a revenue model. You bring together the right team to develop a prototype, build it out, and determine to progress to different iterations as you monitor its success.

Wise noted the financing model for start-ups is rapidly changing. You don’t need a large amount of money to start a business. Entrepreneurs are building prototypes to prove market viability, and increase a property’s valuation without feeling the pressure of V.C. money weighing down on the product and its producers. To that end, Wise is a proponent of entrepreneurial freedom.

EditLift is the first in a family of Web services using SaaS and the cosembling model. Apparently, the lion isn’t ready to rest under the tree.
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