Us online dating industry

That means both new and old players have to differentiate themselves and make their brand identity clear.

Hinge, Mc Leod says, sees itself as the most serious of the casual, mobile-only offerings.

Tinder, only three years old, is now almost always mentioned along with the big dogs Match, e Harmony, and Ok Cupid, which all launched over a decade ago.

The speed at which Tinder has grown shows that a new entrant can succeed, even if it's now harder.

Indeed, in the last two years IAC, through Match Group, bought Plentyof Fish, How About We, Pairs and Couples (a Japanese site), and Friend Scout24 (Germany), among others, as well as non-dating content sites like and The Princeton Review.

A growing market, but a shrinking pool of players LOV), which owns JDate, Christian Mingle, and others.

"I think the market is more difficult now for small apps, because you need liquidity," she tells Yahoo Finance.

"It’s like a social network, you need to have people using it to get more people to use it.

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"People saw Tinder and its success, and said, ' I can do this better.' Tut ultimately, Tinder is the gorilla in the casual end of the spectrum, which is our space. Maybe one or two of these other ones will survive, and be profitable, but the only reason they exist right now is they’re operating off venture capital. Most of them are gone almost as quickly as they show up."ut ultimately, Tinder is the gorilla in the casual end of the spectrum, which is our space. Maybe one or two of these other ones will survive, and be profitable, but the only reason they exist right now is they’re operating off venture capital. Most of them are gone almost as quickly as they show up."Ok Cupid's chief product officer Jimena Almendares agrees.

If you visit a product and there aren’t that many people to see, the likelihood of you coming back is going to decrease rapidly.

EOk Cupid's chief product officer Jimena Almendares agrees.

(It also owns Meetic, Twoo, Black People Meet, Pet People Meet, Little People Meet, and the list goes on; there are 50 sites in its vast portfolio.) IAC, through Match Group, has long been the acquisitive king of the online-dating business.

Sam Yagan, who co-founded Ok Cupid and sold it to IAC in 2011, described this to Fortune in no uncertain terms in 2013: If you want to create a new online-dating platform, he said, "You’re going to launch, you’re going to get some success, and I’m going to buy you for cheap because you don’t have another bidder."" data-reactid="18"In 2015, the march of new dating apps slowed to a crawl.

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