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3 Things We Can Learn From Bumble's CEO Who Turned Down $450M Dollars


Every entrepreneur dreams of reaching a level of success where their business is a well-known brand-name to their audience, new users or customers are becoming interested in their product every single day, and of course, someone knocks on their door with a multi-million dollar offer to buy a company that once started as a tiny idea.

Last year, Whitney Wolfe, the founder of the “women-first dating app", Bumble, made headlines for declining a $450 M dollar acquisition offer.

While some might have read that headline and wondered what the heck she was thinking, others might have found themselves cheering her on.

Wondering why? For starters, the offer came from Match Group, a company that also owns dozens of popular dating websites and apps, like Match.com, OKCupid, and Tinder.

If you don't know much about Wolfe's background, know this: she was also the co-founder of Tinder and served as its VP of Marketing for two years. She ended up leaving with a lawsuit in her hands for the parent company, InterActive Corp, alleging sexual harassment and sex discrimination.

Perhaps that was all the fuel she needed to launch Bumble, an app that empowers women to find love, friendship, and soon business connections.

So not only did she turn down the cash from a company that now owns the dating app she once helped start and then left once she was taken advantage of, she also realized that the offer wasn't such a good one, even though $450 M dollars might seem like a whole lot of cash.

If we take a step back and examine what really happened when she declined Match Group's acquisition, we can learn these three important things.

Photo Courtesy of The New York Post

1. Don't Settle

While it might be tempting to go with the first offer someone gives you when you're doing business or hire the first person you interview, as an entrepreneur, adopt the motto that you just won't settle.

It's something a lot of us say to ourselves when it comes to love, so why don't we stress it more when it comes to how we run our business too? Just because a large acquisition was dropped on Wolfe's table, doesn't mean she had to agree just to play it safe. She exuded confidence and decided to go with her gut that the best is yet to come with her app and with future offers that might come her way.

2. Know Your Worth

One lesson to learn as a brand new entrepreneur is that you shouldn't let your excitement rule your decisions. It might be a huge milestone moment when a large company puts in an offer to acquire your company or product, but it doesn't mean you should sign on the dotted line immediately. Evaluate the worth of your company and the projected worth over the next five years. If the offer is lower, you may want to decline, counter-offer, or continue to build the company and take it public.

In Wolfe's case, she might have laughed at the $450 M dollar offer, since last year, Bumble had an expected evaluation of $500 M. Who knows what it's worth this year or will be worth in the future with all the expansion and new features that Wolfe is launching over the coming months.

Photo Courtesy of Vogue

3. Grow Your Own Way

One of the biggest potential reasons what Wolfe said “No, thanks" to this deal was that she has her own plans for expansion in the coming months and a potential acquisition could cut her and her ideas out of the picture. She's looking to add new features to the app, like an easier way to swap between dating and finding friends, adding a business connection service for networking, and a new look and feel to the app.

Perhaps the lesson learned here is that if you have a vision, go for it. Don't let money talk or change your course when you believe in your product or business and feel it's worth more than anyone is willing to offer you right now in the moment.

3 Min Read

Tempted To Dial Your Ex: 5 Ways To Know Whether Or Not You Should Contact An Old Flame

Thinking of ringing up your ex during these uncertain times? Maybe you want an excuse to contact your ex, or maybe you genuinely feel the need to connect with someone on an emotional level. As a matchmaker and relationship expert, I was surprised at the start of the coronavirus quarantine when friends were telling me that they were contacting their exes! But as social distancing has grown to be more than a short-term situation, we must avoid seeking short-term solutions—and resist the urge to dial an ex.

It stands to reason that you would contact an ex for support. After all, who knows you and your fears better than an ex? This all translates into someone who you think can provide comfort and support. As a matchmaker, I already know that people can spark and ignite relationships virtually that can lead to offline love, but lonely singles didn't necessarily believe this or understand this initially, which drives them straight back to a familiar ex. You only need to tune into Love Is Blind to test this theory or look to Dina Lohan and her virtual boyfriend.

At the start of lockdown, singles were already feeling lonely. There were studies that said as much as 3 out of 4 people were lonely, and that was before lockdown. Singles were worried that dating someone was going to be off limits for a very long time. Now when you factor in a widespread pandemic and the psychological impact that hits when you have to be in isolation and can't see anyone but your takeout delivery person, we end up understanding this urge to contact an ex.

So, what should you do if you are tempted to ring up an old flame? How do you know if it's the wrong thing or the right thing to do in a time like this? Check out a few of my points before deciding on picking up that phone to text, much less call an ex.

Before You Dial The Ex...

First, you need to phone a friend! It's the person that got you through this breakup to begin with. Let them remind you of the good, the bad and the ugly before taking this first step and risk getting sucked back in.

What was the reason for your breakup? As I mentioned before, you could get sucked back in… but that might not be a bad thing. It depends; when you phoned that friend to remind you, did she remind you of good or bad things during the breakup? It's possible that you both just had to take jobs in different cities, and the breakup wasn't due to a problem in the relationship. Have these problems resolved if there were issues?

You want to come from a good place of reflection and not let bad habits make the choice for you.

Depending on the reason for the breakup, set your boundaries for how much contact beforehand. If there was abuse or toxic behaviors in the relationship, don't even go there. You can't afford to repeat this relationship again.

If you know you shouldn't be contacting this ex but feel lonely, set up a support system ahead of time. Set up activities or things to fall back on to resist the urge. Maybe you phone a different friend, join a virtual happy hour for singles, or binge watch Netflix. Anything else is acceptable, but don't phone that ex.

Write down your reasons for wanting to contact the ex. Ask yourself if this is worth the pain. Are you flea-bagging again, or is there a friendship to be had, which will provide you with genuine comfort? If it's the latter, it's okay to go there. If it's an excuse to go back together and make contact, don't.

Decide how far you are willing to take the relationship this time, without it being a rinse and repeat. If you broke up for reasons beyond your control, it's okay. If your ex was a serial cheater, phone a friend instead.

If there was abuse or toxic behaviors in the relationship, don't even go there. You can't afford to repeat this relationship again.

As life returns to a more normal state and you adjust to the new normal, we will slowly begin to notice more balance in our lives. You want to come from a good place of reflection and not let bad habits make the choice for you. Some do's and don'ts for this time would be:

  • Do: exercise ⁠— taking care of you is important during this time. It's self-care and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  • Do: shower, brush your teeth, and get out of your sweats.
  • Don't: be a couch potato.
  • Don't: drink or eat excessively during this time. Again, remember to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
  • Do: think positive thoughts everyday and write down the 3 things you are grateful for. Look at the impact of John Krasinksi's SGN. It's uplifting and when you feel good, you won't want to slide backwards.
  • Don't: contact a toxic ex. It's a backward move in a moment of uncertainty that could have a long term impact. Why continue flea bagging yourself?