YORK COUNTY, Pa. — After poor experiences using online dating apps, two local entrepreneurs started their own company with inclusivity as their mission. Mary Richardson, a Penn State York student, and Brandon Teller of Franklin County co-founded the bisexual dating app Bindr.
“Bindr is an all-inclusive, label-free dating platform,” Richardson said.
They came up with the idea for it after noticing a lack of inclusivity on other dating sites. Richardson and Teller wanted to focus their efforts on providing a safe platform for other individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community.
“We felt there was nothing, there was a missing market for bisexual, pansexual, transgender, nonbinary, everything in between that doesn’t fit within these three big labels of ‘I’m gay, straight, or lesbian’,” Richardson described.
The app officially launched in August 2022 after receiving funding from the Penn State LaunchBox program, a Commonwealth-wide initiative to spur economic development, job creation, and student career success.
“They provided us with over 30,000 dollars of funding,” Richardson said.”
After launching the app, Richardson was asked to speak at several technology-themed events to discuss their development process. During the summer of 2023, Richardson and Teller traveled to multiple pride events to showcase their app.
“Within the first six months we had ten-thousand users, now we’re just over thirty thousand,” Teller said.
The number of users is expected to increase over the next six months.
“By the end of this year we hope to be at one hundred thousand users, and in the next year we plan to be at one-million users with our current growth,” Teller added.
Bindr also secured Richardson a nomination for a Women in Technology Award by the Technology Council of Central Pennsylvania. The award ceremony is scheduled for September 2023. And although grateful for the recognition the app’s received, Richardson and Teller hope to change the narrative of queer entrepreneurs.
“People who get VC (venture capital) funding, only 2% are women, even less are LGBTQIA+,” Teller said.
“It is a statement to show that we can do it as women, we can do it as LGBTQ and at the same time, we’re just trying to help people,” Richardson told Fox43.
Bindr is available for download on iOS and Android.
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