The app lets you ‘wink’ at people you cross paths with offline, and is now available in Indonesia
Inspired by social life in college, dating app Spotted was founded in 2013 by five schoolmates from Heidelberg, Germany. They are CEO Nyk Miftari, CMO Alexander Pelz, Art Director Tung Nguyen, CTO Christian Kapp and CPO Nicolas Amman.
Although they all hail from different fields — ranging from political science, economics to mathematics — they all had the same objective: To not let that cute girl in the campus library disappear without a trace.
Hence, the idea of Spotted began.
Unlike other dating apps, Spotted encourages users to meet real people and create real connections. It does this by combining online and offline features called Déjà-vu and Lovenotes.
Déjà-vu enables Spotted users to locate users who cross their paths. If they’re interested and want to explore the possibility of having a short chat or coffee, they may click on the user’s profile picture and use ‘wink’ to start the interaction—if the person ‘winks’ back, the rest is history.
“We do not consider Spotted really online dating, but we are more like ‘offline dating’ because we really have to see someone to cross paths. We believe in the first time eye contact is made and the magic moment that follows. We say love starts in real life. And that’s where we are totally different from other dating apps,” said Alexander Pelz, Co-founder and CMO.
With integration to Facebook, users can also see if they have common interests via shared Facebook ‘likes.’ They can see basic information of name, age to body height, hair and eye color too.
Pelz claimed that Lovenote is virally popular amongst Europeans and female users, which dominate 50 per cent of app downloads. The app is marketed to a young demographic, especially university students.
In its early days, Spotted was formed as a website that allows visitors to write and exchange Lovenotes. Today, since the app launch on May and June 2014, Spotted has picked up over a million downloads that breaks down to about 10,000 downloads per day.
This year, Spotted expanded to Southeast Asia, primarily in the region’s largest market — Indonesia. After three to four weeks of operation, Spotted has received positive response in the form of 8,000 likes on Facebook and active fans from Indonesia. Within the first month, Spotted has been downloaded around 15,000 times in Jakarta.
“We found a Facebook page and started to post Lovenotes there and people really liked it. After three to four weeks, we had 800 ‘likes’ and very active fans. That was really cool — Indonesians really like our products,” said Pelz.
Spotted is headquartered in Mannheim, Germany with 16 employees. It has raised US$14.5 million a few months ago in a Series A round from local investors.
The company is looking forward to opening an office in San Fransisco, California and setting up a new office in Southeast Asia by next year. It also has plans to expand to Malaysia and Thailand in the future.
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