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Mark Brooks
An authority on the business of internet dating
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TIMES NOW NEWS - June 24 - The stock of Matrimony.com has gained ~2.5x in the last one year. Murugavel Janakiraman, Founder and CEO of Matrimony.com said: "Covid has led to increased digital adoption in the Matrimony business and expects the momentum to continue. Growth has been broad-based across geographies in India and across Tier II and Tier III markets." Increase in marketing expenses had led to impact on profits, said Janakiraman. Profits grew 40% last year and he expects profits to grow at a much better pace than last year. by Poonam Saney See full article at Times Now News See the top news on Matrimony.com Continue reading
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EDEX LIVE - June 24 - Tinder has partnered with VisitHealth to provide members free access to emotional wellness content. Starting Thursday and through July, all Indian users of Tinder will have access to mental health resources including up to two free sessions with licensed therapists across eight languages, said Tinder India, adding that there will be "continued support at discounted rates for beyond the first two sessions" till December. These sessions can be over video, chat or call. See full article at Edex Live See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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REUTERS - June 23 - Soulgate, the Chinese social networking app backed by Tencent Holdings, has halted plans for its IPO in the U.S. because it received other offers to raise capital. The Shanghai-based company, which launched its mobile app in Nov 2016, was looking to raise ~$198M. In March, the company had 9.1M daily active users on average. by Niket Nishant See full article at Reuters See the top news on Soul Continue reading
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WALL STREET JOURNAL - June 23 - People emerging from romantic hibernation are discovering their flirting skills are out of practice. Bumble says that 90% of its users report they are ready to date in real life again. From April to May, conversations on OkCupid increased 17.5%, while matches rose ~15%, the company says. On Tinder, "swipe activity" rose 15% this February YOY. Bumble says 41% of those ready to date in person again still prefer it to be socially distanced. by Anne Marie Chakker See full article at Wall Street Journal See the top news on Bumble See the top news on Tinder See the top news on OkCupid Continue reading
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REUTERS - June 22 - "There's a really interesting trend that has been taking place in the connection space, which is this desire to have platonic relationships," said Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd. Her company is investing in its Bumble BFF (best friends forever) feature, which it said comprised ~9% of Bumble's total monthly active users in Sep 2020. Meanwhile Match Group paid $1.7B this year for South Korean social media firm Hyperconnect, whose apps let people chat from across the world using real-time translation. Hyperconnect's revenue jumped 50% last year. Gay dating app Hornet, meanwhile, aims to be more of a social network focused on users' personal interests, rather than solely a hook-up service. by Aniruddha Ghosh, Subrat Patnaik & Sarah Morland See full article at Reuters See the top news on Bumble See the top news on Match Group See the top news on Hornet Continue reading
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PR NEWSWIRE - June 22 - UnFiltered, a dating app that prohibits edited photos, filters, fake profiles, and only allows recent images to be taken from the In-App camera, officially launches today. See full article at PR Newswire Continue reading
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CNN - June 22 - Jim Lanzone, CEO of Tinder, discusses the new features, including video, available on the dating app and how online dating is evolving. Watch the video at CNN See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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MASHABLE - June 24 - Tinder is launching a slew of new features to serve Gen Z, which accounts for more than half of their users. With the introduction of video and an Explore page, the app is going to look a lot more like TikTok and Snapchat. The app will allow users to have videos in profiles. Another feature is Hot Takes, an interactive game within the app, and Vibes, a question-and-answer game to test users' compatibility. Tinder also adds an Explore page which looks more like Snapchat's Discover than Instagram's Explore. Here, members can see potential matches who share similar interests. by Anna Iovine See full article at Mashable See the top news on Tinder Continue reading
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BBC - June 24 - Bumble has temporarily closed all of its offices this week to combat workplace stress. Its 700 staff worldwide have been told to switch off and focus on themselves. by Dearbail Jordan See full article at BBC See the top news on Bumble Continue reading
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PR NEWSWIRE - June 21 - He Health, BlueCity's health service platform for men, will introduce comprehensive online consultation services and expand its PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) express delivery network in the second half of this year. He Health obtained an Internet hospital license in April. Since its launch in 2019, He Health has promoted awareness of HIV prevention and men's health to tens of millions of users in China, and its services have gradually expanded from sexually transmitted diseases (including HIV) to the field of men's everyday wellbeing. In the Q1 of this year, revenue from He Health reached RMB 11.4M ($1.8M), growing 298% YOY. See full article at PR Newswire Continue reading
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OPW - June 22 - We believe it's not ok to re-write content from journalists. They deserve full credit. This is why we merely illuminate content, and do short culling executive summaries and then point you to their bio and content. We link to the journalists profile, along with other articles on the company featured in the article, and we drive you, our executive readers, to the original article. It doesn't matter if you're finding the summary in your email, or social media, we're not trying to land you back at our website so you can view ads. We're sending you to the originating article so you can view their ads, or better, subscribe to their outlet. We illuminate the top news. The news you can use to make smarter and more informed decisions...and we make sure we give full credit and recognition to the amazing journalists that work so hard (on ever-tighter deadlines and budgets) to research and write the news. Continue reading
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WIRED - June 21 - "Acceptance and normalization of online dating was already underway before Covid-19," says John Madigan, an analyst at IBISWorld, but tailwinds from the pandemic have accelerated growth. In the next four years, IBISWorld predicts that the global online dating industry will increase its worth from $5.3B to $6.4B. In the U.S, ~50 dating companies were founded between 2019 and 2021, according to Crunchbase. One of them is Snack, which bills itself as "TikTok meets Tinder". The app invites users to upload short videos for potential matches to scroll through. So does Lolly, an app that matches people while exploring video content. Feels also features a carousel of short-form videos on profiles, where people are supposed to express themselves. The app has attracted 150K users since launching in April. by Arielle Pardes See full article at Wired See the top news on Snack See the top news on Lolly See the top news on Feels Continue reading
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FORBES - June 21 - A couple who met during the pandemic, and are now engaged with a baby on the way, were tired of dating app culture. Both of them valued activities like yoga, meditation or sweaty workout but they would always end up on dates where it only involved late night cocktails and small talk. Dan Ilani and Megan Baldwin founded ateam, a new membership-based dating and networking app for people who are passionate about health, wellness and fitness. The name ateam comes from the belief that the best relationships in life function as "a team" and is driven by the motto that fitness is a mindset, not a body shape, look or size. The ateam has partnerships with 30 boutique fitness studios across the US. Members will have access to weekly drops of free group classes, members-only events, and opportunities to socialize. by Yola Robert See full article at Forbes Continue reading
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IRISH MIRROR - June 21 - The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival has been cancelled for the second year in a row due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The event was set to take place in September and regularly attracts tens of thousands of people to the Clare town. by David Kent See full article at Irish Mirror Continue reading
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CNET - June 21 - As part of Pride Month, OKCupid is expanding its offering of identity options to 60. by Erin Carson See full article at CNet See the top news on OkCupid Continue reading
LTR - June 21 - Dr. Helen Fisher, Biological Anthropologist at the Kinsey Institute, has devoted her career to the scientific study of love, attraction, and compatibility. Dr. Fisher, who is the Chief Scientific Advisor for Match.com, has conducted numerous neurological, empirical, and survey studies to develop a greater understanding of relationships. According to her research, technology has not killed love, it has changed courtship. Love continues to be deeply woven into society and culture. Three brain systems influence romantic love: sex drive, romantic attraction, and attachment. They are governed by hormones and neurotransmitters. Dr. Fisher's annual study of daters shows that 40% met their last first date online. Video chatting has become a significant intermediary prior to in-person meetings, providing greater opportunity for vetting and chemistry-building. Dr. Helen Fisher shares her wealth of scientific knowledge in the latest video in the LTR Conference series. LTR stands for Love, Technology, Relationships and the online conference covers the Internet dating and Online Social Communities space. It is for members of IDEA and OSCA. The April LTR was kindly sponsored by RealMe, vPaaS by The Meet Group, Real Gifts & Courtland Brooks. Continue reading
THE DRUM - June 15 - Ryan Reynolds' agency and production firm Maximum Effort has teamed with Match to deliver a playful, musical campaign encouraging singles to reignite their love lives. It's time to "Get back to love" according to Match. 12 real wedding singers belt out a parodic musical number urging the world's single folks to get back out there so they can get back to working again. by Kendra Clark See full article at The Drum See the top news on Match.com Continue reading
THE DATING GAME - June 14 - The Dating Game Podcast explores the highs and lows of meeting 'the one'. This week's podcast was focused on dating safety. In this episode, the hosts brought on Mark Brooks, strategic advisor to RealMe, an expert on the business of Internet dating. "It's taking many years for background checks to come of age", Mark Brooks says. "But there are some platforms now that are pretty well hooked into the databases that are available. RealMe, which is strong in the U.S., brings together the platforms that provide good comprehensive background checks, reputation checks, and verification. RealMe is specifically focused on the dating context which is unique." "It's our job, as dating apps, to set up a positive vibe on a first date, which probably should be online." "When a man is interested in a woman, he needs to indicate two things: 1. that he is interested, and 2. that he is safe. And we (dating apps) haven't done a good job with the second point yet unfortunately. We've done a really good job with the first one." "Before the first date, you have to do a little bit of homework, use your instinct and... Continue reading
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SIFTED.EU - June 18 - Smitten, a dating app from Iceland, has raised $2.7M to expand in Europe, and to woo Gen Zers (people born between 1997 and 2015) with a dating app that mixes gaming, entertainment and flirting. Most Smitten users are 25 or younger, and roughly 20% are 18 years old. The company says it will use the investment to launch in the Nordics in late August or early September. Smitten's round was led by early-stage firm byFounders, with participation from PROfounders, Inventures, Brunnur Ventures, Tiny.vc and several angel investors. As part of the round, wine app Vivino founder Heini Zachariassen and PROfounders's Joe Bond will join the board. See full article at Sifted.eu This post also appears on InternetDatingInvestments.com Continue reading
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SEEKING ALPHA - June 18 - Gary Swidler, CFO and COO of Match Group, lauded the dating app company's recently closed $1.725B acquisition of Hyperconnect, saying the deal expands both its tech base and its geographical footprint. Appearing on CNBC, Swidler noted that the purchase will broaden its business model as well, adding social discovery to its traditional dating services and expanding its move into an a-la-carte revenue stream. by Brian Stewart See full article at Seeking Alpha See the top news on Match Group Continue reading
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GRIT DAILY - June 18 - S'More, the anti-superficial dating app from former Magic Labs/Bumble executive Adam Cohen-Aslatei launches in San Francisco with 10k registered users from the city already on the platform. This marks the app's 7th successful launch since its inception in 2020. S'More is also celebrating its SF launch by giving away a week of free premium membership to the first 1000 new users in the city. See full article at Grit Daily See the top news on S'More Continue reading
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FINANCIAL TIMES - June 18 - More transparency is required about the algorithms that wield enormous power over billions of people. But while these algorithmic forces impact our daily lives in beneficial ways, they are often inaccessible and mysterious to the average citizen. Most of us have neither the training nor the faculties to understand how these systems impact us. The algorithms are often protected as trade secrets, and not found on a publicly accessible registry such as the US or UK Patent Office. By disclosing their formulas, open-source algorithms allow a cross section of professionals to examine the fundamental principles at play. Security researchers can determine whether our personal data were put at risk during algorithmic processing. Human rights organisations can help to avoid infringement of our fundamental freedoms. Academics can dig into these systems for bias. "Users have the right to know what inputs are being made both into the algorithms that choose their content and those used to moderate their content," says Jillian York, author of Silicon Values. by Frederick Mostert & Alex Urbelis See full article at Financial Times Continue reading
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PR NEWSWIRE - June 17 - Mr. Clark brings ~20 years of public company CFO experience to his role at Spark Networks. He currently serves as CFO for Synchronoss Technologies, a global leader and innovator in cloud, messaging, digital and IoT products. See full article at PR Newswire See the top news on Spark Networks Continue reading
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THE MOTLEY FOOL - June 17 - Soulgate, which operates one of China's most popular social networks, Soul, has filed early-stage plans for an IPO. The Chinese tech giant Tencent owns a 49.9% stake in Soulgate, making it the largest shareholder in the company. While Soulgate makes every effort to say Soul is not a dating app, it's often described as such. That's because Soul's main attraction is an AI algorithm that helps users find their perfect match. This feature sets it apart from other dating apps, where users scroll through reams of profiles to find someone they like. Soul is now China's fifth-most-popular social media app according to Sensor Tower. This puts it in a great position to grow its share of China's mobile social networking market, which it estimates to be worth $18B. Soulgate's $78M in 2020 revenue is just 0.4% of this opportunity. Soul had 1.7M monthly paying users in March, up from 929,300 in 2020. But that's only 5.1% of its 33.2 MAUs. by Lawrence Nga See full article at Nasdaq See the top news on Soul Continue reading
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FAST COMPANY - June 17 - People are looking to date IRL again, but their priorities have changed, according to the latest survey data from Bumble, 30% said they would not date or have sex with an unvaccinated person. 65% now think it's possible to fall in love without meeting someone in person, 38% prefer to go on virtual first dates with people before meeting them in person. by Christopher Zara See full article at Fast Company See the top news on Bumble Continue reading