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CoinFox continues a series of reviews of interesting blockchain products. Today it is the turn of the Unolabo project that uses smart contracts to create a global ecosystem for freelancers and improve the global freelance market.

Robotisation and sharing economy have predetermined the trends of the global labour market for the next decades: decreasing number of jobs and growing unemployment. In this situation, the freelance becomes a method of sustainable income for thousands of people that can lose their job.

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Why do freelancers need a new platform?

Today freelancers are one of the least protected groups of workers: they are not a part of the staff of any company so they are not protected by employment benefits or any other social guarantees. Existing platforms such as freelance exchanges are not equipped by reliable financial instruments and therefore do not enable freelancers to send part of their savings to a retirement fund or, for instance, to insure the health and the life of the freelancer. Neither can they serve as a proof of income necessary to request a loan from the bank. Besides, the platform tools do not always guarantee the correct settlement between the freelancer and the customer. Moreover, the fee of such freelance services is traditionally quite high. The Unolabo team of Russian developers wishes to solve all these problems.

The final goal of the project, according to the Unolabo white paper, is to create a global ecosystem that would enable the self-employed to develop and monetise their skills, in the same time transforming the freelance in a safer form of activity. Unolabo plans to reach our goal with the help of a special infrastructure relying on the blockchain and on smart contracts. According to the authors of the project, the company pays special attention to the development of the professional education and to the reduction of unemployment in the developing countries.

How does it work?

The freelancers can use the platform to react to the orders made by customers, take part in master classes proposed by other participants and hold their own lectures. All the contracts and transactions are accomplished with the help of an automated and transparent “smart contract”.

The key element of the platform is the term “skill”. The whole interaction on the platform is built around the skill, be it a publication of a vacancy or an announcement of training services. Inside the Unolabo Skillmarket platform, the skills are a universal currency that can be acquired, transferred or sold, or else developed and improved. In the end, the level of maturity of the skill will be the measure of value for the service paid by the customer. At the same time, every freelancer will be able to offer his or her professional services to the customer and simultaneously become a student in the master class offered by another participant: for instance, if he is a cook specialised in Georgian cuisine but is not an expert in seafood.

For whom?

The “smart contract” of the project not only serves as a warranty of the correct settlement between the executor and the customer. There are many more people who would be interested in this platform. The team of the project expects to attract international retirement funds and insurance companies that would be able to conclude contracts with the participants of the platform about insurance or retirement contributions. As for the rating of the professional activity of freelancers, it may also interest other partners of the platform, such as bank, software and hardware development companies, airlines and others.

How will the platform be organised?

The Unolabo platform is built upon the Ethereum team blockchain and the smart contracts – according to the developers, this project needed transparency and possibility for the community to control the development of the platform. The Unolabo smart contract includes the escrow mechanism that guarantees both the timely payment from the customer and the necessary result of the freelancer’s work.

The developers decided that the platform payments would be carried out through the internal token UNLB. The whole payment history of interaction of freelancers and customers is recorded in a public blockchain: the goal is to make the system even more trust-inspiring for its participants. The developers also provided for a possibility of decentralised arbitration. If a customer or a freelancer has a claim arising from the transaction, the system involves three independent anonymous arbiters from among the participants of the platform who settle the dispute independently of each other.

Besides the main features of the platform, developers also plan to include a system of loyalty, the MotiVa programme that would give its users an incentive to be more active in acquiring new skills and imparting them to others. Every action will be reflected in the personal rating of the user, and as a reward the participants will get bonus points, available to use for acquiring a medical insurance, making a retirement fund contribution, purchasing airline tickets etc. Moreover, the freelancers will be able to carry out any transactions without paying a fee to Unolabo.

Development of the project

By now, the Unolabo project team has finished the testing of the money transfer system based on the Yandex.Money payment system. Currently, the project is in beta version; the partnership negotiations with international retirement funds and insurance companies are under way. The team plans to launch the product in the countries of South Asia by the second quarter of 2018 and later proceed to South-East Asia.

Currently, the project is starting the token sale of the internal token UNLB: the pre-ICO is taking place between 27 November and 18 January, and ICO will start on 25 January and continue until 15 March. During the pre-ICO, the team offers following bonuses based on the number of tokens bought:

29 November – 14 December
15 December – 10 January
10 January – 18 January
1 ETH = 650 UNLB (30% bonus)
1 ETH = 575 UNLB (15% bonus)
1 ETH = 537.5 UNLB (7.5% bonus).

During the ICO, 500 UNLB will be sold for 1 ETH. In total, ~ 36,674,839 UNLB tokens will be issued. The company plans to sell 65% of them. 15% of tokens will be directed to the development of the ecosystem and to the fund of the partner company MoTiva, 12% of tokens will be given to the team, and 5% and 3% of tokens will be allocated respectively to the bounty programmes and to the early participants of the system. CoinFox wishes success to the рrоjеct and proposes those that took interest in the project to consult its white paper!