Online developers' marketplace Codementor has integrated bitcoin for payments and payouts for its online mentoring service.
Codementor is a live help marketplace that allows developers around the world to get on-demand, live, one-on-one support via screen sharing, video and chat. The company is based in Taiwan and the San Francisco Bay area.
The service boasts more than 1,500 vetted experts, including a number of authors and engineers at major tech firms. Developers can apply to become mentors, set their own prices and join the marketplace with relative ease.
Demand for bitcoin
Codementor said it decided to embrace digital currency due to popular demand, as bitcoin support was one of the top requested features on the service. Another reason was economics, as the low transaction fees associated with bitcoin could boost the company’s profit margins.
Notably, the firm has partnered with Coinbase as its bitcoin payment processor.
Codementor CEO and founder Weiting Liu told CoinDesk that the company is experiencing rapid growth of about 30% month-on-month.
“Up until this point, users could only pay by credit card via Stripe. For pay-outs to mentors, we've been using PayPal and ACH Direct, which is US only,” said Liu.
Liu explained how bitcoin could help Codementor develop its business model and boost profitability:
“Codementor takes a platform fee between 10-20%. Bitcoin has the potential to increase our margin, as it lowers the processing fee we'd be paying for payment and pay-out processors.”
Developers keen to join the marketplace need to sign up, set their rate in 15-minute increments and, once they are approved on the platform, they can offer their services to fellow developers in need of assistance.
Codementor allows developers the choice of different prepaid credit options and also allows them to earn free credit.
Bitcoin adds even more flexibility and efficiency to Codementor’s model by streamlining the process and making the platform more appealing to a global audience of developers, Liu said.
“Bitcoin has the potential to help Codementor become a more efficient marketplace – some mentors are based in countries where existing payment solutions either don't exist or charge a high fee,” he said.
Liu argued that bitcoin could accelerate Codementor’s international growth by addressing these issues, thus making it a viable platform for developers in regions neglected by existing payment platforms.
Gap in the market
Liu pointed out that Codementor’s roster of expert coders includes O’Reilly authors, top Stack Overflow experts, creators of popular libraries and engineers at Amazon, Google and other top tech firms.
Liu explained explained that Codementor offers services that sites like Stack Overflow can't, saying:
“Not all issues are 'questions' that can be googled. For example, 'Can you help me design my architecture based on our unique criteria?' or 'Can you pair program with me?' If Stack Overflow could solve all worries, people would just hire an army of junior developers and ask them to search on Stack Overflow whenever they run into trouble.”
He added that his firm differs from expensive developer bootcamps too, since it provides more flexibility.
Most bootcamps, he explained, have a different business model, requiring applicants to make a substantial financial commitment and set aside significant time to complete their training programmes.
See the company's video overview below:
Coding image via Shutterstock