Gig Economy Workers Facing Unprecedented Conditions as Busin

|May 19|magazine30 min read

Financialnewsmedia.com News Commentary

PALM BEACH, Florida, May 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The current global health crisis has created an unusual and unprecedented divide in the labor market. Now there are Essential and Non-Essential workers and businesses. What defines one and the other is not always a black and white situation… and the lists seem to change almost daily. While the furor over what business can and can't open, one thing is uncontested… BOTH need workers… on the frontlines now and in the bullpen ready to step in when a non-essential category again become essential. The GIG economy is poised to come to the rescue here. In fact it looks like it will continue to grow not in spite of the crisis, but because of the situation business are in. A recent article in CNBC said: "there is a demand for people on the frontlines, particularly in health and online retail. Also as restaurants reopen there will be major staffing issues that the GIG economy can solve.  The article continued: "Laid-off workers should look to industries in which the pandemic has placed increased demand for workers, like health care and delivery services," said Irina Novoselsky, the CEO of Career Builder. "Also, the retailers that are open — like supermarkets and hardware stores — are in need of more staff to manage long lines and to replace those who can't or won't work due to health concerns," she said. "This is not surprising given the increased demand for delivery services, and that consumers are stocking up and making bigger purchases at grocery and big box stores," Novoselsky said.    Active companies in the markets this week include ShiftPixy, Inc. (NASDAQ: PIXY), Grubhub Inc. (NYSE: GRUB), Slack Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: WORK), Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: UBER), Lyft, Inc. (NASDAQ: LYFT).

As for the jobs with the most openings, registered nurses, truck drivers, customer service representatives, drivers with a commercial license and software engineers are all needed, CareerBuilder found.  Gig employment is ramping up in a few key areas to support those essential services, according to an industry report. One insider said: "In a time when people are struggling to make ends meet and wondering when things will return to normal, temporary work can help to bridge employment gaps while serving the greater good. For furloughed workers looking for a temporary paycheck, some of the most in-demand jobs are for warehouse workers, cleaners, stockers and truck unloaders for grocery stores and pharmacies…"

ShiftPixy, Inc. (NASDAQ: PIXY) BREAKING NEWS:  Del Taco Franchisee Partners with ShiftPixy to Combat COVID-19 ShiftPixy today announced a partnership with Diamondback DTNM, LLC (DBA Del Taco), operator of 11 Del Taco restaurants in the Albuquerque, NM area, to comprehensively implement ShiftPixy's disruptive platform across all locations in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic. The Del Taco franchisee is leveraging ShiftPixy's end-to-end platform for human capital management and native delivery.

"The upheaval from COVID-19 has forced restaurants to re-think their approach to customers, employees and third-party alliances.  The folks at Diamondback understood that ShiftPixy was uniquely positioned to help solve critical issues forced on operators but also as leverage to thrive beyond the current crisis," said Scott Absher, CEO and co-founder of ShiftPixy. "With the ShiftPixy platform, John Bissell and his team were able to quickly and effectively revamp their infrastructure to deploy native delivery, allowing them to focus on delivering a great food experience while also keeping the commissions they were losing and better engaging with their customers."

With restaurants across the country facing unparalleled obstacles and forced to dramatically adapt, ShiftPixy recently announced its Restaurant Resilience Plan to give operators access to technology and services vital to their survival and ideal for once business reopens.

"We were already dissatisfied with our legacy providers, and like many other restaurant operators, the pandemic forced us to make integral choices quickly. ShiftPixy offered us the perfect mix of control and services to weather the storm," said John Bissell, VP and COO of Diamondback. "We've saved significant time and capital and have elevated employee engagement. The native delivery solution, which we think is simply amazing, has allowed us to access customers we would not have otherwise reached while maintaining control of our brand."

Once the largest Denny's franchisee with 94 stores in their system, Dennis Ekstrom, former COO of QT and now CEO & President and John's partner at Diamondback added, "ShiftPixy's first to market solution is solving major human capital and customer engagement challenges in the restaurant industry.  Leadership across the restaurant industry should make this brave and smart move now, to not just survive today but to maximize their unit economics once the current crisis passes."

Any restaurant interested in learning about how ShiftPixy is helping operators weather the pandemic can sign up for one of the Company's weekly webinars hosted by co-founder Steve Holmes, at https://shiftpixy.com/webinar-covid19/  Read this and more news for ShiftPixy at: https://www.financialnewsmedia.com/news-pixy/ 

Other recent developments in the markets this week include:

Grubhub Inc. (NYSE: GRUB) a leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, recently put out a statement saying: ""While our policy remains to not comment on specific market rumors, we want to reiterate our views with respect to M&A-related matters given the current level of recent speculation.

"We remain squarely focused on delivering shareholder value. As we have consistently said, consolidation could make sense in our industry, and, like any responsible company, we are always looking at value-enhancing opportunities. That said, we remain confident in our current strategy and our recent initiatives to support restaurants in this challenging environment."

Slack Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: WORK) recently announced that it will report its financial results for the first quarter of fiscal year 2021, ended April 30, 2020, following the close of the U.S. markets on Thursday, June 4, 2020. Slack will host a conference call that day at 2:00 p.m. Pacific time (5:00 p.m. Eastern time) to discuss the results.

The conference call can be accessed via dial-in at 833-513-0556 from the United States or 778-560-2600 internationally. The conference ID is 8566284. A live webcast of the conference call will be available on the Slack Investor Relations website. Following the completion of the call, a replay will also be made available at the company website. 

Slack has transformed business communication. It's the leading channel-based messaging platform, used by millions to align their teams, unify their systems, and drive their businesses forward. Only Slack offers a secure, enterprise-grade environment that can scale with the largest companies in the world. It is a new layer of the business technology stack where people can work together more effectively, connect all their other software tools and services, and find the information they need to do their best work. Slack is where work happens.

Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: UBER) recently announced the pricing of $900 million principal amount of 7.500% Senior Notes due 2025 (the "notes"). The principal amount of the offering was increased from the previously announced offering size of $750 million. The notes are being offered only to persons reasonably believed to be qualified institutional buyers pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act") and to non-U.S. persons in accordance with Regulation S under the Securities Act. The sale of the notes is expected to close on May 15, 2020, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions.

The notes will accrue interest payable semiannually in arrears on May 15 and November 15 of each year, beginning on November 15, 2020, at a rate of 7.500% per year. The notes will be guaranteed by one of Uber's subsidiaries, Rasier, LLC, as of the closing date, and thereafter will be guaranteed by all of Uber's domestic restricted subsidiaries that are or become borrowers or guarantors under its 2016 senior secured term loan B facility. The notes and the guarantees will be Uber's and the guarantors' general unsecured senior obligations.

Uber intends to use the net proceeds from this offering primarily for working capital and other general corporate purposes, which may include potential acquisitions and strategic transactions.  The notes have not been registered under the Securities Act or any state securities laws, and unless so registered, may not be offered or sold in the United States absent registration or an applicable exemption from, or in a transaction not subject to, the registration requirements of the Securities Act and other applicable securities laws.

Lyft, Inc. (NASDAQ: LYFT) recently announced the pricing of $650 million aggregate principal amount of Convertible Senior Notes due 2025 (the "notes") in a private offering (the "offering") to persons reasonably believed to be qualified institutional buyers pursuant to Rule 144A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"). Lyft also granted the initial purchasers of the notes a 13-day option to purchase up to an additional $97.5 million aggregate principal amount of the notes. The sale of the notes to the initial purchasers is expected to settle on May 15, 2020, subject to customary closing conditions, and is expected to result in approximately $637.5 million in net proceeds to Lyft after deducting the initial purchasers' discount and estimated offering expenses payable by Lyft (assuming no exercise of the initial purchasers' option to purchase additional notes).

The notes will be senior, unsecured obligations of Lyft. The notes will bear interest at a rate of 1.50% per year. Interest will be payable semi-annually in arrears on May 15 and November 15 of each year, beginning on November 15, 2020. The notes will mature on May 15, 2025, unless earlier redeemed, repurchased or converted. Lyft may not redeem the notes prior to May 20, 2023. Lyft may redeem for cash all or any portion of the notes, at its option, on or after May 20, 2023, if the last reported sale price of Lyft's Class A common stock has been at least 130% of the conversion price then in effect for at least 20 trading days (whether or not consecutive), including the trading day immediately preceding the date on which Lyft provides notice of redemption, during any 30 consecutive trading day period ending on and including the trading day preceding the date on which Lyft provides notice of redemption at a redemption price equal to 100% of the principal amount of the notes to be redeemed, plus any accrued and unpaid interest to, but excluding, the redemption date. No sinking fund is provided for the notes, which means that Lyft is not required to redeem or retire the notes periodically.

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