The League, a members-only dating app that describes itself as "curated" rather than elitist, has raised $2.1 million in a seed funding round according to Business Insider. The app syncs with your Facebook, like Hinge, but adds LinkedIn to display your job and education to potential matches.
As SFist reported last September, the invitation-only site was then in Beta with a population described as 20 percent CEOs, founders, co-founders or presidents, 28 percent director-level or higher. 45 percent held advanced degrees. Now the service's velvet-roped waiting list numbers 15,000.
"You're smart, busy & ambitious," reads the League's introduction. "You don't need a dating app to get a date - you're too popular as it is." So why join the League? Unlike Tinder, where you're frequently matched with friends, the League hides your profile from them as well as from business contacts and coworkers, sparing you any potential embarrassment. And, as for the quality of Tinder, the League does throw a little shade. "You deserve the best. We're not saying Tinder doesn't have its uses (hello Vegas!) but why not spend your time a little more...intelligently?"
Once accepted to the service, members get one "ticket" to give to a single friend. There are currently 4,500 League members in San Francisco, with plans to expand to New York and London.
Amanda Bradford is the League's CEO and Founder, a Stanford MBA who previously worked at Salesforce and has reportedly been offered a role at Facebook. She was hoping to raise just $750,000, but several angel investors including five of her professors at Stanford jumped at the opportunity to invest.
"The best universities curate students," Bradford told Business Insider, "Employers curate their employees. Work and school are the top places where 20-somethings meet each other. So it makes sense for a dating community." No, Bradford isn't just explaining the perpetuation of class in American society. She's pointing out that the League is just a digital form of something that already exists in swanky bars and private functions. People already ask potential partners about their jobs and education. As the League puts it, "Let's admit it - we all do 'research' via social media."
One big question for the the League is how to keep it's chic exclusivity while adding more members. "If you just let everybody in, it's another dating app," Bradford previously told Businessweek. For that, I've got a million dollar idea that I'm giving away for free. Charge a prohibitive membership fee.
Previously: Now There's A Tinder Just For Tech Elites