‘The future of dating apps is more than swiping!’ Matthew McNeill Love, Co Founder of Thursday talks video, audio, interactive features and funding!

Why we say “f**k dating apps, 6 days of the week”.

Monday 3rd: New match!

Tuesday 4th: Hi, how are you?

Wednesday 12th: Hey! I’m good thanks.

Thursday 20th: Sorry, been busy! What’s up?

Friday 21st: Nothing much! Would be great to meet up sometime.

Saturday 22nd: Sure, how about next week?

Sunday 28th: …

Monday 31st: New match!

…look familiar?

Talk about Groundhog Day. We all know how it goes. Either you match with someone great but can’t muster the enthusiasm to meet, or you match with someone you are so excited about, but they ghost. Einstein famously said that insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.

I think he would agree that the way we use dating apps fits this description. Since when has modern-day dating driven us to the point of insanity?! Where has the romance, the excitement, the butterflies gone? Let’s go back to basics.

Dating is not something we have to do. It’s not a chore. Finding a ‘happily ever after’ is not a race or something that should be taken so seriously. We should approach dating like it is something we want to do – something to look forward to! To some extent, I see dating as a numbers game, you have to meet with enough people until you find the one. I’m not saying I don’t believe in love at first sight, but I think we can all agree, it’s pretty rare.

This is the magic of Thursday. It makes everything that is great about dating apps happen on one day. It designates Thursday as the most exciting day of the week to be single, where you get to match with people who are actually keen to meet that day, and who are just excited about it as you are! You’ve broken the back of the week, and you’re ready to meet someone new, explore cool places, get out and about. Get excited; this is your day to date! After all, Thursday is the new Friday.

Being single is not forever, so have fun with it and stop wasting 6 out of 7 days of the week on dating apps. If you have a ‘bad date’? There’s always next Thursday. As someone who is the protagonist in their own ‘Groundhog Day: Dating edition’, take control back and enjoy being single again.

Like any app, to build and grow Thursday to over 80K MUA, we’ve had to raise capital, and by doing so it really strikes me how similar being single is to the process of fundraising…

We raised a $160K pre-seed round through crowdfunding on Crowdcube back in 2018. We thought this would be enough to build the global product we know we are going to be.

Turns out we were wrong and building a tech company isn’t cheap.

This is like a first date when you’ve been chatting to someone for weeks on a more traditional (boring) dating app; you build up a big vision of what they’re going to be like in your head and they don’t quite live up to it. So you part ways and try again with someone else.

We then used a process called ‘in stant investment’ with the highly recommended Seed Legals platform to top up our finances as and when we needed the capital. If you ever find yourself in the very confusing space between pre-seed and seed ready then I strongly suggest raising in smaller chunks as and when you need to, increasing the valuation each time. It allows you to continue to add value (valuation) to your company and prevent ungodly dilution from investors who believe in your vision/product/team/potential but know you’re low on cash and so have you bent over a barrel.

This is like the rather awkward “we’ve been on a few dates and not really sure where we stand with each other” phase – a situation I know all too well.

This investment strategy allowed us to build and launch an MVP that actually worked (miracle in itself in this game) and grow our team to more than just 3 underpaid co-founders. In June 2022 we raised a $3.5m Seed Round from a combination of Angels and VCs at a valuation we were extremely pleased with. The Angels we have onboard, most being exited founders themselves are supportive, empathetic and extremely knowledgeable. The VCs are well connected, have been involved in many other start-up scale-up businesses previously and know exactly what’s expected to achieve a good Series A.

The “we’ve had ‘the chat and we’re now exclusive” phase.

The next stage in our financial relationship is our Series A, also referred to in the Thursday office as “ the marriage”. These are the VCs who are going to help my fellow co-founders and I to take Thursday to the next level and expand beyond New York and London. We’re currently undergoing a $20m raise and will use this money to continue our US expansion. We aim to be in 20 major US cities by December 2022.

To summarise, as I hope I have been able to demonstrate, there are many similarities that can be drawn between the trails and tribulations of being single and that of raising capital. The most true comparison of all I propose however is that both, unless you get extremely lucky, are a numbers game before you find ‘the one’ and therefore be prepared for a hell of a lot more no’s than yes’s.

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