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Mark Brooks
An authority on the business of internet dating
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TIMES NOW NEWS - May 31 - Since the pandemic began, more & more people have started exploring virtual dating. Elie Seidman, CEO of Tinder spoke with Sonali Krishna, to discuss Tinder's upcoming 'Global Mode' feature, how people are mingling in the times of COVID & why during the time of social distancing, dating apps are the solution to boredom & loneliness. Watch the full interview only on ET NOW.. See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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DISTRACTIFY - May 30 - Dating app Hater was matching people based on dislikes. The app was started by a former Goldman Sachs employee who quit his job to pursue comedy. The Hater app started, literally, as a joke. To launch the app, Brendan took his idea to Shark Tank. Mark Cuban gave him $200K as a starting investment, though instead Brendan ended up raising $1M in VC funding. In 2017, the app was downloaded ~1M times. While the Hater app website is still active, the app appears to have been removed from the app store, and the company's Twitter hasn't been active since 2018. There is no official statement from the company about their closure, but it appears to have been shut down. During Brendan's interview with CNBC, he admitted that the app wasn't making any money at the time, so they were planning on implementing advertising and premium subscriptions, though it appears that never panned out. by Sara Belcher See full article at Distractify See the top news on Hater Continue reading
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WALL STREET JOURNAL - May 30 - U.S. national security officials have approved an investor group's purchase of gay-dating app Grindr that is being sold by a Chinese company after the Trump administration raised concerns about the potential theft of Americans' personal data. China's Beijing Kunlun Tech said that the buyer - San Vicente Acquisition - has secured approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. Grindr could be sold for $608.5M. In 2016, Kunlun paid $93M for a 60% stake in Grindr. It acquired the rest of Grindr for $152M in 2018. by Katy Stech Ferek See full article at Wall Street Journal See the top news on Grindr Continue reading
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PEW RESEARCH - May 30 - 30% of U.S. adults say they have ever used a dating app or site, and among them, a majority (57%) report being concerned about how much dating apps collect about them. Older online daters tend to be more worried about data collection. These findings are from a Pew Research Center survey from October 2019. by Erica Turner & Monica Anderson See full article at Pew Research Continue reading
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SEEKING ALPHA - May 30 - KKR & Co has built a 5.21% stake in ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE which makes it the third largest shareholder. Mediaset SpA has increased its stake to 24.2% while Czech Media Invest owns 10%. While KKR claims that the investment is of purely financial nature, it might be the first sign of an upcoming acquisition and privatization of ProSiebenSat.1. In order to do that, KKR could partner with one (or both) of the company's biggest shareholders. ProSiebenSat.1 intends to refocus on the entertainment business. However, the group's second pillar - NuCom - does not really fit into that picture. Therefore, it might indeed make sense to separate the two businesses. NuCom might be spun off or sold. General Atlantic owns 28.4% of NuCom. NuCom was valued with an enterprise value of €1.8B in early 2018. If sold today, it is surely worth considerably more, as it has been growing steadily and maintained profitability. The company is growing both organically and through acquisitions. ProSiebenSat.1 and General Atlantic have reached an agreement to purchase The Meet Group for ~$500M. Meet will be integrated into NuCom's online dating business. by Christoph Liu See full article at Seeking Alpha... Continue reading
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OPW - May 31 - Subscribe here. We promise to be interesting, save you time and keep you informed. Continue reading
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VENTURE BEAT - May 28 - Kippo has raised $2M for a dating app for gamers who want to find like-minded companions. Primer Sazze Partners led the round, with participation from Tinder executives and partners at Eaton Workshop, NextGen Venture, and IHeartComix. The capital will primarily be used to expand the interactive features on the app. The name for the company comes from a Korean word, and it's a twist on "happiness". The grand vision is to create a platform for everybody, a platform that is a gamified experience for people to meet new people". Gamers identify what games they like and include a lot of photos in their profiles. They also connect using in-game names, rather than phone numbers. 93% of Kippo users go on a virtual date and play video games together before meeting in-person. The company was founded in 2019 by David Park, Cheeyoon Lee, and Sean Suyeda. by Dean Takahashi See full article at Venture Beat See the top news on Kippo This post also appears on InternetDatingInvestments.com Continue reading
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MOMO - May 28 - Q1 revenue decreased by 3.5% YOY to RMB3,594.1M ($507.6M). Net income attributable to Momo increased to RMB 539M ($76.1M) in Q1 2020 from RMB 289M in the same period of 2019. Monthly Active Users on Momo app were 108M in March 2020, compared to 114.4M in March 2019. Total paying users of live video service and value-added service, including 4.2M paying users of Tantan, were 12.8M for the Q1 of 2020, compared to 14M in Q2 of 2019. "Q1 2020 was a challenging and yet very fruitful quarter for Momo," commented Yan Tang, Chairman and CEO of Momo. See full article at Momo website See the top news on Momo See the top news on Tantan Continue reading
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DAILYMAIL.CO.UK - May 28 - Tinder has launched a new feature, called Promts, that allows users add question-and-answer cards to their profile. Prompts show a range of questions on subjects including pets, favourite songs and past-times on a user's profile, with their answer typed below. These cards will then appear on the app after a potential suitor has swiped through all the profile pictures added. Questions available will be updated regularly. by Luke Andrews See full article at DailyMail.co.uk See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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BUSINESSWIRE - May 28 - The Meet Group, a leading provider of interactive dating solutions, will be participating in two upcoming virtual conferences. The App Promotion Summit USA and Mobile Growth Association's MGS Global Virtual Conference will both take place in June 2020. See full article at Businesswire See the top news on The Meet Group Continue reading
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HAPPIFUL - May 27 - A new research from comparethemarket has revealed a fifth of couples met online, with Google searches for online dating soaring by 75% since lockdown began. Searches for 'Zoom date' have risen by ~ 284%. by Bonnie Evie Gifford See full article at Happiful Continue reading
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DAILY MAIL - May 26 - According to Bumble's recent survey, more than half (55%) of UK online daters are seeking long-term relationships after the coronavirus lockdown is lifted. The UK lockdown period, which started on March 24 and is being gradually eased, has left people 'very lonely', Bumble said. 43% of users think they will spend more time chatting online and focus on getting to know each other before they meet in person. Only 29% of respondents plan to continue using video dating. by Jonathan Chadwick See full article at Daily Mail See the top news on Bumble Continue reading
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BUSINESSWIRE - May 26 - Hily, one of the fastest-growing dating apps in the world that gathered ~11M users just in one year, is now available in Japan. Hily's primary goal is to provide its users with better communication. The app matches the users based on ~40 entry points. Hily's newest feature called Compatibility Quiz allows users to check if they are compatible with people they want to swipe right on. The system will show detailed results with points they had in common and a description of their prospective relationship. For Hily, the Japanese launch is the first move to Asia. Last year, the dating app successfully rolled out to 20 countries in Europe and Latin America. See full article at Businesswire See the top news on Hily Continue reading
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LEINSTER LEADER - May 27 - Mad Hatter was nominated by the local community for grant to help survive Covid-19 lockdown. The coffee shop is owned and run by Alice Cope, and was nominated by locals who use the app. The Bumble Community Grant is a programme which aims to provide financial support to small businesses in need during the Covid-19 pandemic. Bumble received ~2,6K applications and nominations in total for the grant across Ireland and the UK. See full article at Leinster Leader See the top news on Bumble Continue reading
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NEWSWIRE - May 26 - PositiveSingles, a dating platform for people with STDs, has introduced a new video call feature for their iOS users. The website has ensured security and privacy while rolling out this video chat feature. There is a limit to the number of video chats users can have per day, to 20, and each call is for a max of two minutes. No one can send a video call request to hidden profiles and to people you are not in conversation with. See full article at Newswire See the top news on PositiveSingles Continue reading
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OUTSPORTS - May 26 - LGBT mental health researcher Jack Turban explains the vicious relationship between Grindr and mental health. He says Grindr works like a slot machine: once in a while you score, but more often, you fail. A survey of 2K iPhone users showed that 77% of Grindr users felt regret after logging on. "The big problem is, as a society, we have not created enough safe spaces for LGBT young people to explore their gender and sexuality in a developmentally appropriate way," Turban says. "As a young gay, lesbian or bisexual person, if you're closeted, you're probably not going to have a high school prom, you're probably not going to have a classroom valentine. Because kids don't have that place to explore, a lot of them go online. It feels safer and more discreet and more anonymous." Even for those who aren't struggling with their identities, the coronavirus quarantine can be an exceptionally isolating experience. Many LGBT people are closer to their chosen families than biological families, and it can hurt to not see them. Stuck without in-person socialization, it can be tempting to turn to Grindr for some instant gratification. by Alex Reimer See full article... Continue reading
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BIG THINK - May 26 - Research by Western Sydney University and the University of Sydney has linked the experience of swipe-based dating apps to higher rates of psychological distress and/or depression. 20% of participants who use swipe-based dating apps reported a significantly higher level of psychological distress compared to those who didn't use these apps. Not all time spent on these apps is damaging, however. Up to 40% of current users say they previously entered a serious relationship with someone they met through one of these apps. A study of 5K people between the ages of 18-30 years old shows that people are spending an average of 10 hours per week on dating apps alone. Men were logging on to check their status on dating apps 9 times a day, with women logging on 10 times per day to check their potential matches. by Jaimee Bell See full article at Big Think Continue reading
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FORBES - May 24 - Online dating app Muzmatch serves ~2.5M Muslim users around the world. Its new video dating feature makes the world's first religious-themed dating app to include video calling. According to Muzmatch's own in-house surveys, 83% of its users had trouble finding a spouse because of lockdowns. According to CEO Shahzad Younas, the new function doesn't come without some controversy as video dating is rejected by many Muslims. Some followers would consider it "haram" or forbidden. by John Scott Lewinski See full article at Forbes See the top news on Muzmatch Continue reading
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ITWEB - May 22 - Founded in 2015, The League was created by Amanda Bradford, who also serves as CEO, and is modelled after private members-only clubs like Soho House. The members-only swiping app, aimed at professionals, uses data and social graphs from both Facebook and LinkedIn to fuel its proprietary algorithm. In South Africa, it joins other popular apps like Tinder, EliteSingles, Predict Dating App and SouthAfricanCupid, to name a few. by Simnikiwe Mzekandaba See full article at ITWeb See the top news on The League Continue reading
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DMAGAZINE - May 22 - The coronavirus pandemic has forever changed the way singles connect, says CEO of Match and Match Affinity, Hesam Hosseini. Q: How are you coping amid the COVID-19 crisis? A: Our mission of sparking connections has never been more important. We want to do everything we can to help singles feel less isolated and more connected. Q: Did your business continuity plan work, or were there surprises? A: We had to reprioritized our roadmap and went to work building new ways for our members to connect. Q: What are the short-term ramifications for your specific industry? A: The tools singles are using to connect changed overnight. Now 70% of our members would use video chat; before pandemic, it was only 6%. Q: Have you found silver linings in these difficult times? A: I think our team has become closer than ever. Q: How are you maintaining your company culture? A: We hold all of our meetings over video and we use Slack constantly. We get together via virtual happy hours, puppy parties, story time with kids, mindfulness activities, and we even celebrated our 25th anniversary over Zoom this week. Q: What will things look like for... Continue reading
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ECONOMIC TIMES - May 21 - Online matchmaking service provider Matrimony has recorded consolidated net profits of Rs 6.77 crore ($895K) for the quarter ending March 31, 2020. For the full year ending March 31, 2020 net profits were Rs 29.53 crore ($3.9M, down from Rs 42.45 crore ($5.6M) in 2018-19 fiscal. The revenues for the quarter grew by 4.5% YOY to Rs 94.1 crore ($12.4M) and for the year by 6.7% to Rs 371.8 crore ($50M). The number of paying subscriber is 704K. See full article at Economic Times See the top news on Matrimony Continue reading
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STAR OBSERVER - May 21 - A survey by Romeo (Planet Romeo), an Amsterdam-based gay dating app, has revealed that 70% of those surveyed said they haven't gone out on dates. 48.3% were keeping dates online only, while 21.6% said that the COVID-19 fallout had sapped their interest in dating. Half of the participants (50%) were also worried about their financial futures, and less than half (43.2%) were concerned about how the global pandemic would affect their health. by Shibu Thomas See full article at Star Observer See the top news on Romeo Continue reading
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TECH IN ASIA - May 21 - Singapore-based advisory firm Kollective Ventures has acquired dating and networking app operator Paktor Group from Taiwan's M17 Entertainment. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Paktor Group was formed in 2013 by M17's current CEO Joseph Phua. It owns a number of dating assets, including its namesake app that has operations in Taiwan, Korea, and Southeast Asia. It also runs Goodnight, an app that enables voice conversations between strangers. Paktor was merged with livestreaming company 17 Media in April 2017 to form M17. by Miguel Cordon See full article at Tech In Asia See the top news on Paktor See the top news on Goodnight This post also appears on InternetDatingInvestments.com Continue reading
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THE VERGE - May 21 - Tinder will soon be testing Global Mode, a new option for daters to opt in to allow their profiles to show up around the world, regardless of where they live. They'll also be able to view and match with people who live in other countries. The feature sounds similar to, but is different from, Tinder's paid option Passport, which lets people select a location and swipe in that place. With Global Mode, people's profiles will populate throughout the world and it's free. The pandemic, Tinder says, pushed the company to speed up its timeline for getting rid of geographic filters. by Ashley Carman See full article at The Verge See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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ABNEWSWIRE - May 21 - According to Hily's last poll of its 1500 users, 52% of respondents would love to try virtual dating. The app is now launching a new video chat feature. Hily enables its users to call only those people with whom they have a match. Also, the users can switch off the video calls function in the settings at any time. See full article at Virtual Strategy See the top news on Hily Continue reading