Blind dating app JigTalk raises cash ahead of full launch

Attempting to disrupt the dating industry by proving "it’s what’s on the inside that counts", the app sees users' faces covered by jigsaw pieces

A new blind dating app that hopes to prove “it’s what’s on the inside that counts”, has received backing from Manchester-based Apadmi Ventures ahead of a full UK launch.

Pitching itself as a gamified alternative to Tinder, Leeds-based JigTalk sees users’ faces covered by 16 jigsaw pieces – which come off one-by-one as more messages between matches are exchanged.

Co-founded by Max Adamski and Alex Durrant, the app was soft-launched in February 2017 and already has 10,000 users after launching in four cities.

Previously backed by angel investors from New York and London, a full launch with a brand new site is expected in October of this year.

Last July, JigTalk became the first ever UK start-up to be accepted onto NASDAQ Entrepreneurial Centre’s startup programme.

Based in San Francisco, co-founder Durrant will spend 12 weeks in the non-profit entrepreneurial centre, which seeks to educate, innovate and connect current and aspiring entrepreneurs.

Designed to help early to mid-stage start-ups grow their business by determining key milestones and hitting them, JigTalk will also receive free business mentoring from industry leaders, personal coaching, training and resources, all valued at approximately $250,000.

JigTalk joins an incredibly busy market, that includes industry giants Tinder, Plenty of Fish (POF) and Bumble, as well as smaller and more specific apps such as muzmatch (for Muslims) Grindr (for gay men) and Clikd (photo sharing).

Valued at $3bn globally, over 100 million people currently use dating apps across the globe.

Apadmi Ventures is the investment arm of Apadmi, a leading UK mobile technology group whose clients include the BBC, NHS and Argos.

Jigtalk is currently available for free on iOS and Android.

Durrant said:

“We’re incredibly excited to bring Apadmi Ventures on board and grow rapidly with their vast expertise and impressive management team. It’s yet another step towards disrupting the dating industry.”

Howard Simms, CEO of Apadmi Ventures, said:

“We get to see lots of great ideas and people, but the JigTalk team are next-level. The combination of a hugely disruptive challenge to one of the biggest markets in the world and a group of creative people with such phenomenal drive is extremely exciting.

“We’re already working closely together to enable JigTalk to scale as fast as such a brilliant opportunity deserves.”

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