Spoondate helps you find food based on people or people based on food. After entering the types of food you are craving and your location into the website, you will see a stream of all of the people in your area who are also craving that same type of food. You can scan the list for someone you want to meet and have dinner with. By handling the programming chores, Nebie saves as much as $115,000 a year until she can afford to hire a front-end engineer. The back-end code that runs the algorithms that produces matches was created by co-founder Van Nguyen, a software engineer who once worked for Metamoki, a social gaming company that at one time drew in $1 million per month from the multiplayer game Mob Wars during Facebook’s early days.
Together Nebie and Nguyen own more than 90% of the company. Less than a year after teaming up, they’ve raised $50,000 in seed money from 500 Startups, a Mountain View, California-based incubator for newly minted Internet ventures, for a 5% equity stake in their company. They raised additional capital through issuance of a convertible note to The Initio Group, a Vancouver, British Columbia-based early stage investment firm. The note will convert only after Spoondate raises its priced equity round, a set price that will allow investors to purchase a stake in the venture.
Spoondate was so popular that when it first launched in private beta in June, signups occurred so fast that it reached its membership quota within a couple of hours and the site almost crashed. This led Nebie to limit users to invite-only in San Francisco until it’s ready to launch publicly this month. Right now, membership is free, and Spoondate generates revenue by selling dining experiences in the Bay area. They are also finalizing a paid membership that will include special dining perks. To grow Spoondate and offer dining experiences outside of San Francisco. Nebie and Nguyen need $500,000 in capital, which they will use to round out their team and push sales and marketing efforts in other major cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and Miami.
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