Whitney Wolfe Herd, the founder and CEO of the popular dating and networking app Bumble announced the company’s new “Moves Making Impact” initiative on CBS This Morning today. Now women on Bumble Date, Bumble Bizz and Bumble BFF can choose a cause to support — human rights, public policy or economic development — and the company will make a donation to a woman working towards the cause every time a user sends a message to a new match. (Bumble requires women to make the first move.) Bumble is working with the female-focused non-profit organization Vital Voices to identify and partner with female leaders.
“We are so excited about this because we’ve given women the opportunity to make the first move,” Wolfe Herd told CBS This Morning, “Love, friendship, business. But now their first moves can go beyond themselves and impact a woman in the world, and that woman that we’re impacting is impacting a woman in their community, so it has this catalytic effect.”
Wolfe Herd founded Bumble in 2014 and the company says it has since grown to more than 55 million users in 150 countries and that almost 1 billion women have made the first move by messaging other users. Forbes estimates that the company is valued at $1 billion. The valuation would make Bumble part of an elite group of “unicorn” companies — privately held companies valued at $1 billion or more. Wolfe Herd would be part of an even smaller subset of female founders running billion-dollar businesses. Of the 134 U.S. venture capital-backed “unicorn” companies as of May 2018, there were just 14 with a female founder, according to Pitchbook.
The new initiative aims to continue Bumble’s goal to empower women. “It is about paying it forward and giving women the opportunity to be change-makers through their daily lives,” Wolfe Herd said of the initiative. “And if we’re asking you to make the first move, why would we stop at empowering you?”
It has been a busy time for Bumble. It recently launched Bumble Fund to invest in other female-founded startups, a print magazine called Bumble Mag, pop-ups called The Hive and Bumble-verified meeting places called BumbleSpots. Bumble just announced that it will be releasing Private Detector, an artificial intelligence-based tool that detects lewd images and warns users so they can decide if they want to view it, report it or block the individual. Wolfe Herd is also backing Bill 2789, a proposed Texas law that would criminalize sending lewd photos to someone without consent.
Wolfe Herd is reportedly considering taking Bumble public. “Our revenue is remarkable, and it is only going to get better,” Wolfe Herd previously told Forbes, “There is a need for a new IPO in this space, and we offer something that nobody else offers. This would allow us to really spread our wings at a new level.”