At just 25, she was a successful entrepreneur who co-founded the viral app Tinder and even after leaving the company due to a sexual harassment lawsuit, Whitney Wolfe never gave up on her journey to success. And this is what makes her the ultimate self-made, strong millennial businesswoman.
With her resume, you would never know that she actually comes from a small town near Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. Born to a property developer and a housewife, she got a chance to live in Paris, France when her father took a sabbatical from work. She studied at one of the best international schools frequented by the children of royalty and socialites alike. On returning home, she was bullied for her Parisian fashion sense and the irony was that the same people were wearing her style three years later. She later pursued a degree in International Relations at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and would also sell eco-friendly bamboo tote bags, which was her first stint as an entrepreneur.
After graduating, she moved to LA (Los Angeles) and joined Hatch Labs which was a startup incubator and began working on the app Cardify. It was during this time she met with the co-founders of Tinder with whom she started the app in 2012. In 2014, she left Tinder due to a sexual harassment lawsuit with co-founder Justin Mateen, which was settled for $1 million. Despite this huge hurdle, she got in touch with her friend and mentor, Andrey Andreev of the Badoo success, who convinced her to start another revamped dating app. In December 2014, she co-founded Bumble with him and two others who had previously worked for Tinder.
Bumble, being an online dating is different because women hold full control making contact first, not men. In 2015, at just eight months old, the app had 500,000 users and 3.5 million people by 2016. Wolfe describes the business as 100% feminist, 80% of the staff who work for the app, are women. In 2017, the number of users has risen to a whopping 18 million and she was even offered a buyout of $450 million but rejected it. Today, she is named in Forbes’ 30 under 30 List and is showing no signs of slowing down.