An entrepreneur tasked with examining unfair employment practices in the gig economy was an early investor in one of its most criticised companies, Deliveroo.
Greg Marsh, cofounder of hospital startup Onefinestay, was part of the Taylor review into current employment practices.
It’s a wide-ranging report, but most people have focused on its potential impact on the gig economy, which includes firms like Uber and Deliveroo. The term gig economy loosely covers firms which rely heavily on casual workers, who usually take work through an app.
Marsh said he had “one small shareholding” in Deliveroo as an early investor. He told Business Insider that the Taylor review scope was “very broad” and that its recommendations would impact a large number of firms.
He added: “The fact that one panel member historically had one small shareholding in one company which might be affected surely does nothing to compromise the position of the panel, which is unanimous on the entire substance of our recommendations.”
Marsh invested in Deliveroo’s angel round in 2014, but agreed to sell his shares when asked by the government to take part in the Taylor review to “avoid any possibility of conflict.”
He began the process of selling his shares in November and added that both Matthew Taylor, the chief executive of the RSA who led the review, and the government were “all aware and comfortable with this.”
The connection led the IWGB, an aspiring union which represents casual workers including Deliveroo riders, to suggest the Taylor review was prejudiced.
Marsh said critics were trying to score political points.
A government spokesman added Marsh was an “expert in his field.”
“Given the importance of considering the business aspect of any proposals it was right that someone with his experience was involved. Prior to his appointment he disclosed his interest to the Cabinet Office and agreed to divest himself of his shares.”
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