- Backed by 500 Startups/ Dave McClure
Company pioneering the next evolution of online dating
12,000 registered profiles as of Oct. 2016/ Growing 20% month-over-month
$2+ billion growing market with proven revenue models
- Exclusive opportunity to invest at an early stage
- Founded by a passionate Stanford/Berkeley/OkCupid Labs alum with domain expertise and unique insight
The Problem: On today's dating apps, less than 11% of matches result in actual dates!
People spend most of their time and energy swiping and texting, instead of connecting face-to-face. The majority of users want dates, but apps force them to play a game of matching, messaging, scheduling, and waiting. This leads to widespread frustration, high user churn, and a sentiment commonly known as “dating app fatigue.”
Technology shouldn’t get in the way of connection; it should make it easier.
Whim achieves this goal by ditching the chat-centric model, and replacing it with an actual date setup service.
The chat-centric model is a relic from the 1990s. In 2016, technology-driven meetup coordination is not only possible, but also expected from a generation of mobile app users who get almost everything “on demand.” Whim uses scheduling tools, matching and venue algorithms to set users up on dates with the people they want to meet, at a time and place that's convenient for them.
The Result: On Whim, users' chances of meeting in real life are more than 6x that of other dating apps.
Whim is the only app that genuinely prioritizes meaningful, real-life interactions. 70% of matches on Whim result in actual dates, versus less than 11% on other apps:
How It Works
Whim makes dates happen based on when and where you're free, and whom you want to meet. Simply:
Open the app
Indicate when you're free
Match with someone you like
Whim takes care of the rest!
Whim schedules your date and alerts both of you via text message. Upon opening the app, you find a recommendation for a specific cocktail bar, wine bar, or cafe located roughly equidistant from the two of you, as well as your date’s contact information so that you can be in touch just to confirm the details. Seamlessly, you find yourself out on a real-life date in as little as a few hours later -- without any significant work or buildup.
Backed by Scientific Research
Social science experts agree that other dating apps’ emphasis on predictive matching algorithms and virtual online interactions is misguided. Along with frustrated singles everywhere, they too are calling for a solution that puts the emphasis back on in-person interactions.
Aziz talks about this all the time!
We started working on Whim in 2014, when we realized that the current slew of dating apps was actually causing significant frustration for relationship-seeking singles. A lot of hard work, testing, iterating, consulting with experts, user interviews, and research went into building our MVP (minimum viable product). Dave McClure’s 500 Startups accelerator recognized the value in our first product and admitted us into Batch 10, in spite of being much earlier stage than they typically allow into their program.
App Launch + Instant Traction
After 500 Startups’ coaching and continued iteration, Whim launched in the App Store to San Francisco and New York City in 2015. The app instantly gained organic traction, accumulating thousands of users in those cities based purely on earned media and word-of-mouth. 3,500 users signed up for Whim in its first month, and we quickly earned nods in TechCrunch, Fortune, ProductHunt, Los Angeles Times, and more.
Growing Through Word-of-Mouth
For the past year, we have continued to grow almost exclusively through organic sharing. Our metrics tell the story:
Our Users Love Us
Direct feedback proves that we are headed in the right direction:
Building upon the success of Whim 1.0, we’re currently hard at work on our second major release. Among countless improvements based on both qualitative and quantitative data from our users, Whim 2.0 will include:
A new subscription revenue model and a move toward more premium experience positioning
Built-in incentives for dating follow-through and accountable behavior, and disincentives against “flaking”
A simplified scheduling process, balancing the need for planning with the desire for spontaneity
Brand new UI/UX by one of the Valley’s top designers
- A platform that enables sponsored venue partners, unlocking a potentially lucrative second revenue stream
We know what we're doing
Whim has already accomplished impressive traction with very little funding to date. We’ve been covered by major media outlets and have received an overwhelmingly positive response from our users.
The market is huge, and growing
Online dating is a $2+ billion industry in the U.S. alone, growing 14% year-over-year. Internationally, the space is still relatively unsaturated and has even greater potential for growth.
We're on a mission
Our mission is to influence dating and social culture in a positive way. We believe people are better off meeting each other in real life versus endlessly swiping, texting on their phones, and going nowhere. By investing in Whim, you’re supporting a movement of love and genuine connection.
Use of Funds
We are raising at least $50,000.
Your investment in Whim will allow us to:
- Complete development of version 2.0
- Increase growth and acquisition 3x
- Earn meaningful early revenue
If we exceed our minimum fundraising goal, our plan is to:
Accelerate growth and acquisition
Release Whim for Android
Terms of the Deal
Investing in this crowdfunding opportunity through Republic allows you to be an angel investor in Whim under the provisions of Title III of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 (known as the “JOBS Act”) and Regulation Crowdfunding. The financial instrument for your investment is called a Crowd Safe. With a Crowd Safe, your investment automatically converts into stock when Whim undergoes a liquidity event - in other words, when we are acquired or have an IPO.
The valuation cap specifies the maximum valuation under which your investment will convert into shares. Whim's valuation cap for this round is $5 million. If the company is acquired for less than the valuation cap amount, the discount provision gives you a discount to the valuation. The discount provision for this round is 20%.
What the Press Is Saying About Whim
"By putting the emphasis back on actual dates, Whim users are 10 times more likely to meet someone than those utilizing other dating sites."
"Whim’s design can get you from behind your phone screen into that cute art gallery you’ve been meaning to check out without a massive (and ultimately fruitless) time-suck."
"There’s … Whim for people who are tired of all the chatting in the current batch of dating apps.... Whim is particularly absolutist in its approach to setting up actual dates."
"Whim was born out of women's frustration with being trapped in texting purgatory with guys who would ghost when it was time to meet."
"Whim tells both users when and where — yes, it picks a date location for you — the date will take place."
"Forget rummaging through in-depth profiles and messaging back and forth. If two people are interested in each other, they're going on a date."
"Whim, a new app from OkCupid alum Eve Peters, wants to take daters back to the basics, but with the modern spin. Instead of just swiping and chatting, the app sets up actual, face-to-face dates."
"For the uncoupled among us who’d rather gaze into some pretty eyes than a busted-up iPhone..."
I have been involved in the online dating space - as both a product designer and a customer - for nearly a decade. Two years out of Stanford and single in San Francisco, I began in 2006 as a user of Match.com. From early on, I lamented the time and energy wasted in moving past the messaging zone and into the real-life zone. On a regular basis, I found myself spending over an hour a day managing messages with potential dates, with only a fraction of those conversations culminating in actual meetups. When I did eventually meet these people, most of them disappointed after the back-and-forth text messaging buildup.
In a day and age where mobile technology enables us to get almost anything “on-demand,” I wondered why dating apps still felt so exhausting and inefficient. In search of answers, I founded my first dating startup in 2008, earned a nod as a TechCrunch50 nominee, and went on later to lead product development at OKCupid Labs. In 2014, armed with learnings from that first venture and my time at OkCupid, I took the entrepreneurial leap again. I rounded up an awesome development team, built our MVP, got into 500 Startups, and officially launched the following year.
My team's philosophy – which is supported by sociologists like Eric Klinenberg and Eli Finkel (not to mention your grandmother, by the way!) – is that face-to-face interaction (not algorithms, and not texting), is the best way to get to know someone and see if there’s chemistry. With that in mind, we come to work every day with a goal to make getting to that meaningful in-person moment as efficient, delightful, and worthwhile as possible.
These days I'm single, and I love using Whim to meet people in a way that feels effective, fun and even a bit magical. I'm excited to be crowdfunding for this company. This is modern dating, funded by the people, for the people! I hope you'll join us.
P.S. Happy Whim Success Story
We wanted to share this recent email from one of our users:
Let's create more stories like this one!
Here's why 103 investors believe in Whim
I invested because I think people don't want to chat for hours after spending hours trying to match. People want a real life date. This also forces both people to really pay attention to who they are matching vs blind swiping.– Ryan Baird · less than a minute ago
Big fan of IRL– Quinn Rotchford · 2 days ago
I see that there is need for Whim. I like the founders background, her team and want to support Women founders.– Robert Howard · 3 days ago
I had this idea a few years ago. Believe in the problem and the app as a good solution for a targeted demographic of people who are actually ready to date. Think this can easily compete with the other subscription services if designed right.– Matt Foxman · 5 days ago
I invested because not only do I think Whim has an innovative new idea but because I believe in EVE PETERS!– Madeline Hartzell · 8 days ago
Because I believe in their team!!– John Fazzolari · 9 days ago
I invested because I believe in Eve and Whim is the first dating app that is actually about dating and not about ego.– Alyse Opatowski · 10 days ago
- Big market opportunity. - Problem worth solving. - Founders with previous background in the industry.– Vatsal Shah · 13 days ago
I use the app– Aleksandr Kalika · 14 days ago
I have been a user of Whim, think the direct scheduling model is an interesting approach, and am keen to contribute to the success of this team.– Pieter Gunst · 18 days ago
It's a novel and helpful idea for an app.– Adam Elisha · 19 days ago
Swiping and texting people isn't how to make a connection. You need to get to know people by meeting them in real life. Eve's brilliant idea is to make that happen fast so you don't waste time, but just skip to the important part.– Cathy Pearl · 21 days ago
Congrats on your amazing progress so far, Eve! Excited for your next chapter!– Sashee Chandran · 23 days ago
Whim is way ahead of the online dating curve. They identified the flaw in swipe-apps long before Hinge or Tinder, and built the product from the start with this vision. Eve Peters ran product at OK Cupid and understand the space better than anyone.– Shouvik Banerjee · 23 days ago
I know Eve personally, and she has dedicated her career to online dating products. If anyone can create a new product that addresses unmet needs in the dating space, it's her.– Michael Duca · 23 days ago
Like the idea. Think it will be successful.– Martin Dahl · about 1 month ago
I think this dating app will be a joy to use, is needed, and I think it will be an extremely profitable investment!– Jonathan Williams · about 1 month ago
I've always said there should be a dating app that fast-forwards to "the good part," ie skipping the email back-and-forth and just letting you meet in person. Whim has great people, a terrific interface - and it's FAST. This could be a game-changer.– Molly McGibbon · about 1 month ago
Sounds like an improvement on the status quo. Not interested in dating, myself, but like to support new technologies.– Charles Patton · about 1 month ago
Generally enthusiastic about the idea of supporting early start-ups, convinced that the world of "brokering" dates needs to move towards more offline interaction.– Caroline Hofmann · about 1 month ago
Sounds like a great idea and the founder seems to be smart and very passionate about the idea. Go Eve!– Billy Truong · about 1 month ago
Whim seems to have a good shot at solving a very real problem that many contemporary dating applications do not address. Connections made further down into interest funnel seem to have the capacity for better outcomes and engagement for users.– Cameron Woodward · about 1 month ago
I strongly believe in this company's business model, innovation, and intelligent and driven team.– Philip Sayegh · about 1 month ago
I believe in a vision of real-world connections in a world that has been reduced to pixels. Excited for Whim!– Shaherose Charania · about 1 month ago
I know the founder and have seen her commitment to Whim day and day out for the last couple years. She is solving a very real problem within the dating world. This is creating real connections for real humans.– Zubin Desai · about 1 month ago
Y Combinator says that what makes a great founder is unstoppability, determination, formidability, resourcefulness, intelligence, and passion. That pretty much sums up exactly how I would describe Eve. Great founders make for great investments!– Nisan Gabbay · about 1 month ago
Eve is an impressive founder who has dedicated herself to the dating space for years. She has incredible grit and determination, and an undying belief in her vision for Whim!– Prerna Gupta · about 1 month ago
We believe that actions speak louder than words. And we believe in you!– Kylie Buckner · about 1 month ago
Female Founders Series: Whim--The Dating App Focused on Actual Dates
Nov 18, 2016
This summer, we featured Republic, a newly launched equity crowdfunding platform that focuses on supporting women founders.
Dating App Culture is Being Reconsidered, and We're All About It
Oct 20, 2016
Whim’s design can get you from behind your phone screen into that cute art gallery you’ve been meaning to check out without a massive (and ultimately fruitless) time-suck.
Can Women Fix Dating?
Feb 1, 2016
Whim was born out of women's frustration with being trapped in texting purgatory with guys who would ghost when it was time to meet.
This New Dating App Will Actually Schedule Your Dates for You
Aug 28, 2015
By putting the emphasis back on actual dates, Whim users are 10 times more likely to meet someone than those utilizing other dating sites.
This dating app skips messaging and goes straight to the date
Aug 19, 2015
Whim, a new app from OkCupid alum Eve Peters, wants to take daters back to the basics, but with the modern spin. Instead of just swiping and chatting, the app sets up actual, face-to-face dates.
Whim is a Dating App Focused on Actual Dates
Aug 18, 2015
There’s … Whim for people who are tired of all the chatting in the current batch of dating apps... Whim is particularly absolutist in its approach to setting up actual dates.
Clickworthy: An app for every love interest
Feb 10, 2015
For the uncoupled among us who’d rather gaze into some pretty eyes than a busted-up iPhone…
New Dating Apps Cut to the Chase, Set Up Dates Quickly
Jan 28, 2015
Forget rummaging through in-depth profiles and messaging back and forth. If two people are interested in each other, they're going on a date.
Whim is a new mobile dating app that sends users on real-life dates instead of aimless swiping, meaningless matching and endless texting. Whim is currently available for download in the iOS App Store.
After creating a profile, you tell Whim when and where you’re free, browse profiles, and choose the people you’d like to meet. As soon as two of you with mutual interest have your schedules align, the app selects a local bar or cafe and sets you up for a date. Once the date is set, matched users are encouraged to get in touch and confirm plans with each other using their personal phone numbers. After the date, Whim asks you for feedback about your date (which is seen only by Whim admins, not by your date).
Other dating apps are essentially match-and-message platforms that give users a way to chat with one another. It turns out that matches on these apps result in actual dates less than 11 percent of the time! Users waste significant time and energy on conversations that lead nowhere, or that ultimately disappoint.
Whim, on the other hand, sets users up for real-life meetings right away. It's the first and only app to offer a true dating service -- taking matches offline and turning virtual connections into real-life dates.
Whim doesn’t have a messaging feature because texting is an inefficient -- and mostly ineffective -- way to get to know someone. Nearly 80 percent of messages on other dating apps go unanswered altogether, and it takes an average of two weeks of back-and-forth messaging to get to a real-life date. Additionally, time spent messaging leads people to build up a false sense of rapport that often leads to unrealistic expectations.
Once Whim users match, they do generally contact each other via one another’s cell phone numbers. However, since the date is already arranged, their messaging tends to be efficient, direct, and limited to confirming plans that are already established.
Whim is deeply committed to ensuring that our users have a safe and enjoyable experience dating through our app. We hand-screen every profile before it is approved and accepted into the community. In addition, should there be any reports of bad behavior via our app's built-in feedback feature, we are able to respond immediately and remove the offending user from the system.
It's currently free to download Whim and go on dates! Users can choose to upgrade to Star Membership to take advantage of premium features. For example, “Connect Now” is a feature that lets you get in touch to plan dates with your matches directly even if your busy schedules don’t align in the app right away.
Absolutely. Whim users can choose to view and engage with either or both genders.
Currently, Whim earns revenue through in-app purchases of recurring monthly subscriptions that give users access to additional, premium features in the app. A future release of the app may require users to pay a small monthly fee in order to use the service, after first experiencing the app through a free trial.
Our early marketing strategy has focused primarily on earned media (PR), in-app sharing incentives, and word-of-mouth. With additional funding, we will invest in content marketing development as well as paid advertising on Facebook and Instagram.
Whim is backed by 500 Startups (Dave McClure) and other angel investors.
IAC (Interactive Corp., owner of Match, Tinder, and OkCupid) is an extremely active acquirer in the dating space. Other potential acquirers include eHarmony, Zoosk, Spark Networks, and other dating-focused organizations.