Grouper social club

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Grouper
Founded2011
FounderMichael Waxman, Tom Brown
DefunctOctober 1, 2016 (2016-10-01)
Headquarters
ServicesOffline Social Club
Number of employees
25

Grouper was an online, invite-only social club that uses data gathered from Facebook profiles to organize group outings (called Groupers). Matches for the outings were gathered and analyzed first by a computer and then by a human to ensure strong matches.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8] The excursions were planned in venues throughout 25 cities for six people. Groupers consisted of two groups of three friends and can consist of three males and three females, six males, six females, or any other possible combination.[1][2][9][10][11]

Michael Waxman founded the New York-based startup in 2011.[12][13][4][14][15][16] The company was run by a staff of 25 people.[17] In 2013, Time Inc. listed Grouper in its 10 NYC Startups to Watch for 2013.[8][4] Three years later, in October 2016, the company shut down.

How a Grouper works[edit]

Grouper is an invite-only service that matches two individuals according to data found – with the permission of the user – on the user's Facebook profile, including age, career, education, etc.[14][5][1][12][18][19] The company determines a match between two individuals using both algorithms and its member experience team. A time is then set for the "Grouper".[12][18][19][20][21][22] The two parties are asked to each bring two friends.[3][1][4][23] No names, photos, or information are disclosed before the actual meet.[12][24][25] Upon arrival at the determined location, the group receives a complimentary first round of drinks, including tax and tip, at a reserved table (the cost is included in Grouper's service fee).[18][14][26][10]

The company offers arrangements for both opposite- and same-sex Groupers.[27][28]

Communication with users[edit]

Grouper features real-time customer relationship management (CRM).[29] The service also grants users direct contact with the director of membership experience, who engages users with personalized reminder texts and bits of advice for success on Groupers.[6]

The member experience team communicates with users throughout the Grouper. Users receive a customized message from the member experience team on the morning after their grouper inquiring as to the how the night out went. This feedback is analyzed and stored for future matching.[30]

Active cities and expansion[edit]

For more than a year after its initial launch, Grouper was only available in New York City.[12][15] By June 2012, the service had grown to San Francisco and Washington D.C.[12][5][31][20]

By September 2012, Grouper had expanded its services to 10 additional cities, Atlanta, Austin, Brooklyn, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Miami, Philadelphia, and Dallas.[24][32][33][34][21][35][36][25][37][28] That December the service became available to users in Toronto.[38]

The company reported its services are officially available in 25 cities in the US and Toronto, including 2013 additions Nashville, Denver, and others. Additionally, Grouper London is launching in November 2013.[39][40][17][30]

Technological developments[edit]

In April 2013, the meet-up service released its Grouper iPhone app.[40][17] The company has reported that the app, which features push notifications and alerts, allows users to set up a Grouper in as little as an hour, avoiding the long questionnaires other services require their users to fill out.[17][30]

Partnerships and acquisitions[edit]

Y Combinator, a company that funds startups, is the primary backing for Grouper.[41][42][27][4]

In October 2012, Grouper announced its Hackaton program.[42][43] The concept involved flying select designers and software developers to New York City for a week-long, expenses-paid trip.[43] The company invited the designers into their headquarters to work on new Grouper product development and brainstorm with the team.[42]

Grouper arranged the trip after establishing partnerships with Airbnb and Hipmunk.[43][4]

Grouper announced a partnership with Uber in January 2013.[27][4] The alliance was made to encourage users to utilize Uber's car service for transportation on Grouper dates.[27][44]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Sam H. Sanders, Modern Dating Is A Group Sport For The Hashtag Generation, National Public Radio, retrieved November 4, 2013
  2. ^ a b Jenna Wortham (August 21, 2012), The New High-Tech Dating Technology? Meet in a Bar, The New York Times, retrieved November 4, 2013
  3. ^ a b Lisa Butterworth, Atypical dating sites, Time Out, retrieved November 4, 2013
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Jordan Crook, Grouper Talks Competition, Partnerships, And Why Group Dates Offer Built-In Credibility, TechCrunch, retrieved November 4, 2013
  5. ^ a b c Zavh Davis, GROUP DATING SITE…ERRR…SOCIAL CLUB, GROUPER, MATCHES 3 GUYS WITH 3 GIRLS OVER DRINKS, Tech.co, retrieved November 4, 2013
  6. ^ a b Rob Fishman, Why Everyone Loves the Online-Dating Service Grouper's Challe, Slate, retrieved November 4, 2013
  7. ^ Alex Williams (January 11, 2013), The End of Courtship?, The New York Times, retrieved November 4, 2013
  8. ^ a b Amy Lombard (April 25, 2013), Time Inc.’s 10 NYC Startups to Watch for 2013, Time Magazine, retrieved November 4, 2013
  9. ^ Melissa Melms, Blind Dating for a Modern Gal: Bring Your Friends!, Glamour, retrieved November 4, 2013
  10. ^ a b Group Dating: The Next Big Thing?, CNBC, retrieved November 4, 2013
  11. ^ New Dating Site Includes Your Group of Friends, NECN.com, retrieved November 4, 2013
  12. ^ a b c d e f Hindman, Nate C. (June 13, 2012), Michael Waxman, CEO Of Dating Startup Grouper, Found Love On His Own Site, Huffington Post, retrieved November 4, 2013
  13. ^ Liz Gannes, New Web Start-Ups Want to Help Your Offline Social Life, All Things D, retrieved November 4, 2013
  14. ^ a b c Startup Lowdown: Grouper, Sulodown.com, retrieved November 4, 2013
  15. ^ a b Online Dating Trend! Grouper Makes Group Dating Fun & Fashionable, Yahoo! Shine Blog, retrieved November 4, 2013
  16. ^ Lydia Dishman, HOW SQUARESPACE, GROUPER, AND EAST COAST COMPANIES WORKED THROUGH SANDY, Fast Company, retrieved November 4, 2013
  17. ^ a b c d Matthew Lynley, Group Dating Comes to Your Phone, The Wall Street Journal: Digits Tech News & Analysis, retrieved November 4, 2013
  18. ^ a b c GROUPER SEXY-COMFORTABLE DATES WITH FRIENDS, Daily Candy, retrieved November 4, 2013
  19. ^ a b Matt Lynley, New Startup Grouper Sounds Like One Of The Best Ways To Meet New People To Date, Business Insider, retrieved November 4, 2013
  20. ^ a b Grouper: Not necessarily for the thirtysomething single, Examiner |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  21. ^ a b Janelle Nanos, Grouper: A Spin on Blind Dating, Boston Magazine, retrieved November 4, 2013
  22. ^ Online club sets up group dates between friend, Today, retrieved November 4, 2013
  23. ^ What's Courtship?, Huffington Post, retrieved November 4, 2013
  24. ^ a b Kathleen Miles (September 12, 2012), Grouper Expands To 10 More Cities, Offering Meetups Without Dating Pressure, Huffington Post, retrieved November 4, 2013
  25. ^ a b Jonathan Rienstra, Wingmen required: Grouper sets up three-on-three blind dates at local bars – and it works, Dallas Culture Map, retrieved November 4, 2013
  26. ^ Date less awkwardly, Thrillist Media Group, retrieved November 4, 2013
  27. ^ a b c d Sarah Perez, Uber Partners With Grouper So Blind Date Goers Can Ride In Style, TechCrunch, retrieved November 4, 2013
  28. ^ a b Wendy Settle, Group dating service Grouper launches in Dallas, Pegasus News, archived from the original on September 24, 2012, retrieved November 4, 2013
  29. ^ Ximena, Grouper, The Evolution of Online Dating, Chicago Now, retrieved November 4, 2013
  30. ^ a b c Not Dating Dating Site Grouper, Westword, retrieved November 4, 2013
  31. ^ GROUPER ONLINE DATING LAUNCHES IN SF, Daily Candy, retrieved November 4, 2013
  32. ^ Rip Empson, YC Alum Grouper Launches In 10 Cities To Bring You A Better Way To Meet New People, TechCrunch, retrieved November 4, 2013
  33. ^ Grouper hits Miami, In The Scene Miami, retrieved November 4, 2013
  34. ^ Grouper Expands, Safe Online Dating |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  35. ^ Join a 3v3 pickup game, Thrillist Media Group, retrieved November 4, 2013
  36. ^ Meredith Hoffman, Group Matchmaker Brings Technological Prowess to Brooklyn, DNAinfo New York, archived from the original on June 10, 2013, retrieved November 4, 2013
  37. ^ Megan Rose Dickey, New York's Next Big Startups, Business Insider, retrieved November 4, 2013
  38. ^ Sharon Jayson (December 2, 2012), Dating sites – for all ages – focus on keeping it real, USA Today, retrieved November 4, 2013
  39. ^ Rip Empson, Now In 20 Cities, Grouper Brings On-Demand Group Dates To The iPhone, TechCrunch, retrieved November 4, 2013
  40. ^ a b Grouper releases an iPhone app, adds on-demand scheduling for its 3-on-3 blind dates, The Next Web, retrieved November 4, 2013
  41. ^ Eliza Kern, 20-somethings looking to date? Try getting off your phone and meeting IRL, Gigaom, retrieved November 4, 2013
  42. ^ a b c Rip Empson, Grouper Teams Up With Airbnb & Hipmunk To Offer Engineers & Designers A Free "Hackation" In New York, TechCrunch, retrieved November 4, 2013
  43. ^ a b c Grouper Teams Up With Airbnb & Hipmunk To Offer Engineers & Designers A Free ?Hackation? In New York, Neharunbegum2, retrieved November 4, 2013
  44. ^ Uber + Grouper = A Winning Combo, singleinatl, retrieved November 4, 2013