Leading Japanese crowdsourcing company Crowd Works (TSE: 3900) managed to bring down loss attributable to owners of parent to two million yen ($18,000 U.S.) in the first quarter ended Dec. 31. That’s from Y35 million ($316,000 U.S.) last year, as the group’s sales continued to increase, according to its latest financials.

Tokyo-based Crowd Works has been serving the gig economy since 2011. It owns and operates a career-support service for freelance engineers and designers at CrowdTech.jp, a freelance matching platform at CrowdWorks.jp, a skills-sharing site at Cyta.jp, an online billing agency service for freelancers at Feecle.Works, and an information portal for freelancers at Times.

The company’s net sales grew 50 percent to Y2 billion, while it recorded an operating profit of Y14 million in the Oct.-Dec. period. It saw an operating loss of Y5 million for the same period a year earlier. Average revenue per user rose to Y44,313 from Y36,901.

The group increased work requests to individuals through its crowdsourcing service.

“The value of work for which contracts were concluded reached their highest level ever for the group in Q1,” it said. “Meanwhile, the group continued to invest aggressively in new business while boosting cost-efficiency in existing businesses.”

The company also increased its investment in advertising to grow the Crowd Works user base. As a result, net sales were Y269.2 million yen — up 21 percent year-on-year. But, the segment’s loss increased to Y28 million in Q1 from the loss of Y15.5 million in the previous financial year.

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