Dating Industry Round-up, Oct 20

This is a weekly column where we cherry-pick the news of online dating for you and add some perspective in the form of juicy commentary. What better way to keep tabs on the industry?

– Minder (coverage at This is the sign of the times. Whenever you get a ‘halal’ version of something, it means you have the proof of concept right there. The market is getting quickly fragmented with all the Tinder-like apps fighting for available niches and trying out all kinds of differentiation. This is good, because the biggest product of this period will be new, winning ideas, before an emerging gorilla starts defragmentation by gobbling it all up. This is the perfect market phase to start your own dating business.

– Europeans cheat more than Americans (article at Independent): Or are they just being honest? A total of 31 per cent of American men admitted to having cheated at some point in their lives, while 49 per cent of European men admitted to an infidelity. For women, 41 per cent of Americans admitted to having cheated on a partner, while 64 per cent of Europeans said they had been adulterous. I guess, any research with any results is good, as long as it makes a good click-bait story.

– Zoosk co-founder Shayan Zadeh (interview at HuffingtonPost) gives perspective on his life, creating and growing Zoosk, and moving on to the next big think in life. People like him teach us to be fearless in pursuing our goals and dreams. Very interesting read.

– Grindr founder Joel Simkhai (video at TechInsider) is a power user of his own dating app. This is a very welcome reminder for dating startup founders to know what they sell. It’s the only way to iterate to success. We’ve seen too many times when people tried to automate everything very early just to “sit back and see how millions pile up”. Did it ever work? Not once!

Spark acquires JSwipe… after suing it (article at CNN Money): When somebody sues your dating startup, they might as well just be flirting with you. So fear not, you might be acquired soon. I guess, this is a form of modern corporate romance going on here.

Match group files for IPO (article at WSJ): The preliminary filing indicated Match would raise up to $100 million. $888.3 million in revenue in 2014, up about 11% from the previous year, according to its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Match’s net income for 2014 was $148.4 million, up 18% year over year. Big payday for all the hard work and investment!

– After Ashley Madison Breach, Online Daters Check Credentials (article at NY Times): Here comes that predictable spike in consciousness and due diligence in the world of online dating after the July hack of the most controversial dating property. The truth is it’s like a New Year resolution — in a few months it just gets back to “normal”.

picture by Tom Bloom

Marvin Powell

Marvin is an industry veteran who has been working with dating startups since 2001. In his spare time he loves fishing and writing bad poetry.

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