Match Group Inc, the parent company of the popular hookup app Tinder, will buy a major stake in Hinge, a self-proclaimed Tinder rival. Hinge was launched seven years ago and has been focusing on offering an alternative to Tinder’s casual dating options.
Match will buy a 51% stake in the company and could buy the whole company over the next year. The sum for the acquisition remains unclear.
Hinge is a hugely popular dating app for iOS even though Tinder has been the top grossing dating app for years. When it was launched, Hinge was very similar to its rival, allowing users to swipe left on a photograph if they were not interested or right if they were interested. When two people swiped right, the app considered them a match.
Unlike Tinder, Hinge required from users who planed to date to have one Facebook connection or more in common. In 2016, the app was redesigned and got rid of the swiping interface. In return, Hinge became a dating app for people that want a relationship instead of a one-night stand.
Hinge is for People who Got Tired of Tinder
“Goodbye swiping! On Hinge, every like is unique,” Hinge tells its users. The app placed a heavy bet on users’ disgruntlement with Tinder’s superficiality and its base rose four times.
Hinge’s CEO Justin McLeod noted that after the changes the app’s users’ dating life dramatically improved. Users can pay a monthly subscription for a premium service, but the free tier offers access to essential functions.
Match said that the company is unique because it appeals to Millennials who used Tinder’s services but at some point, started to dislike it. Match expressed initial interest in Hinge last year when it bought a seat on its board.
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