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dateplay.com

Stage

Incubator/Accelerator | Alive

Total Raised

$220K

About DatePlay

DatePlay is an app which combines online dating with gaming. The company uses games to accurately analyze users' personalities to suggest matches with unrivaled accuracy.

DatePlay Headquarter Location

London, England,

United Kingdom

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Latest DatePlay News

Up to date with Vana Koutsomitis: An interview with The Apprentice runner-up

Nov 22, 2017

On the importance of timing: Losing out to Joseph Valente and his boiler installation business ImpraGas in an all or nothing pitching competition, the 2015 winner had already been running his service business for three years before even applying to the competition. Now a franchise that turns over £2m a year, ImpraGas presented a more immediate opportunity for growth and expansion for Lord Sugar and his judges – in comparison to DatePlay which was still only a concept. Asked if she was tempted to launch immediately after The Apprentice had aired with a minimal viable product , so as to cash in on the height of her publicity, or wait in the long grass for a fully-fledged app, the runner-up says she was tempted to strike while the iron is hot – but patience is required. “The focus we had with this app was to have balance for both. It’s a juggle of balancing the day-to-day, moving things quickly and getting things out there and planning for long-term success but obviously, those two things don’t necessarily go hand-in-hand.” Adding that they had time pressure but wanted to make sure they maintained high standards. “I’m more of an execution get things done person and Joris is more of a planner who really believes in strategy and long-term goals.” On raising funding, user numbers and key milestones Initially pitching to Lord Sugar that the app would make £7,000,000 of profit after three years, Lord Sugar had expressed doubt over DatePlay’s ambitious financial predictions – pointing out how hard it is to quickly monitise dating apps in general. Backed by 390 investors in return for a share of 5.58% equity, Koutsomitis says that aside from the added arsenal of cash – the opportunity gave DatePlay a great chance to get back in touch with the general public. “ Crowdfunding was a really good experience for us because we were able to engage with such a large number of investors. We have nearly 400 investors and they are our brand champions.” Still shy on overall DatePlay user numbers, Koutsomitis says the most important thing when setting milestones is that you have a grand vision. “Our milestones are very nuanced, it’s not just black and white. So it’s not just users or amount of revenue, our milestones are also related to hiring, to product development, to user retention. “We’re trying to build a product with the way people interact. Its all about the big picture and how we can change the world of online dating and revolutionise how we interact with each other.” So, is DatePlay planning to dip back into the world of raising finance anytime soon? “We plan to do private fundraising next time. The crowdfunding experience was good but it was a very arduous process, so we’ll be raising a private round in the next couple of months.” On The Apprentice process: Maintaining that appearing on The Apprentice was part of their long-term strategy for the app,  Koutsomitis echoed sentiments made by previous Apprentice winner Ricky Martin  that there are several different types of candidates that enter the process – all with different motives. “One of the most important things for Joris and I was that we channeled all of the publicity and all of the energy from the public to DatePlay. That was something beforehand we really we knew we had to do. “There was never any interviews where I wasn’t focusing on DatePlay. The app is my baby and that was really the whole point of going onto the show. “So, yes, I definitely saw that there were certain people that had different focuses, and different objectives, but I don’t think that’s right or wrong, I just think it’s based on where they were in their careers and personal journeys.” Going further than most in the competition, and now with her original business plan turned into a fully launched product, would the networking expert turn back the clock and do it all over again? “I’m on very good terms with Lord Sugar, and I think he’s a very respectable and intelligent businessman, so because I had such a great experience with him and Claude, I would go back and do it all over again. “But it was a difficult process, I can’t tell you it was a walk in the park because it wasn’t. It was difficult to feel exposed. “But my experience was positive, it was really transformative. I learned a lot about myself and I learned a lot about my business. It helped me grow as an individual.” On her best business tips: 1. Drown out the noise  “There will be a lot of naysayers and discouraging individuals who will question whether you are able to make it or not. It’s really important to drown that out so take people’s advice with a grain of salt. What I see is that a lot of entrepreneurs get overwhelmed by negativity and they get down very quickly.” 2. Have a vision “It’s very important for you to understand what your goals are. Figure out what you want, and how you’re going to get it. I’m a big fan of writing things down. Yes, your plans will change, but at least you’ll have something to go back to if you get too distracted.” 3. Choose your team members wisely  “Make sure you are choosing people who you can rely on and trust. One of the biggest challenges is a cultural fit. I’d highly encourage you to work with people and hire people that you actually get along with – and that have the same level of ambition as you.” 4. Join a community  “Join a community in whatever you can of like-minded individuals. In my case, Joris and I joined Wayra. They have been critical to our growth. They have given us advice and they have nurtured us.”

  • Where is DatePlay's headquarters?

    DatePlay's headquarters is located at London.

  • What is DatePlay's latest funding round?

    DatePlay's latest funding round is Incubator/Accelerator.

  • How much did DatePlay raise?

    DatePlay raised a total of $220K.

  • Who are the investors of DatePlay?

    Investors of DatePlay include MassChallenge and Seedrs.

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