Whitney Wolfe is one of the most celebrated women entrepreneurs of our time. She founded Bumble, a groundbreaking dating app that also paves the way for fantastic job opportunities. In June this year, Forbes valued Bumble at a staggering $1 billion which effectively makes Wolfe $230 million fortune. Even if Whitney did not land on Forbes’ annual list of America’s Richest Self-Made Women, she is likely to join the acclaimed list next year if Bumble keeps moving northward.
Bumble follows the premise of ‘swiping’ as initially introduced by Tinder a few years before. Interestingly, she co-founded Tinder but had to leave after enduring sexual harassment by co-founder and former love interest Justin Mateen. After her ordeal, Whitney Wolfe was pretty much done with the dating apps so she ventured into establishing an online community where women could interact.
Armed with her latest idea, she felt confident enough to approach Andreev, a Russian billionaire and founder of Badoo Andrey. To her dismay, Andreev was not too impressed, so the two parlayed some ideas over several weeks until she stumbled upon the concept for Bumble. Whitney Wolfe’s premise was one of turning tables such that women made the first move and if things didn’t work out, the post could disappear into oblivion within a twenty-four-hour cycle.
Eventually, Andreev agreed to bankroll this idea to get it off the ground. To this end, he injected an impressive $10 million and allowed Whitney access to Badoo’s software. Bumble came to life at the end of 2014, and within the first month, it registered an upwards of 100,000 users. Two years in, Bumble added BFF, an app that connects best friends, then followed by Bizz for professional networking.
Presently, Bumble and its combined apps boast of 35 million users, and these figures are growing exponentially. The app is now the fastest growing app in the US, and industry behemoths are taking notice. Match.com offered to purchase Bumble for $450 million then increasing this to $1 billion, but Whitney Wolfe didn’t bite. Bumble has faced a slew of challenges such as the neo-Nazi attack but Wolfe chalks this down to misogyny, and nothing will deter her from excelling.