Business Buzz

Austin-based Bumble takes a swipe at LinkedIn with new endeavor

Austin-based Bumble takes a swipe at LinkedIn with new endeavor

Whitney Wolfe of Bumble
Whitney Wolfe Herd is the founder of Bumble.  Photo by Andrew Chan

Bumble is taking a swipe at LinkedIn, the world’s most popular social media platform for professional networking. Austin-based Bumble, which began as a female-centered dating app, is now empowering women to swipe right in order to nurture professional connections.

On Monday, October 2, Bumble launched Bumble Bizz, which the company says emphasizes cultivation of professional opportunities rather than the job hunt. Bumble promotes Bizz as the first professional networking platform to marry the swiping concept and a female-focused approach. Bumble Bizz is open to both women and men.

Whitney Wolfe Herd, founder and CEO of Bumble, says the introduction of Bizz contributes to Bumble’s evolution as a global brand for social networking. Aside from the original Bumble dating function and the new Bizz feature, the app offers a friendship component called BFF.

“Love, friendship, networking — these are all critical connections and the foundation of a healthy, happy life. We want to bring you closer to all of these connections in an empowered way,” Herd says in a release.

Bumble Bizz is available in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany. Through geo-targeting, Bizz lets a user connect with other users for networking and mentoring opportunities.

“We’ve stayed focused on creating a community with a foundation built upon positivity, respect, confidence, and encouraging women to make the first move,” Herd says.

Bumble Bizz features a photo verification tool designed to help ensure users are who they say are. Beyond photos, a user’s Bumble Bizz profile includes a digital resume, as well as a section showcasing the user’s talents and accolades. A user also can post work examples in extra profile cards.

“Much like the transformative impact swiping had on the dating space, Bumble Bizz is specifically designed to disrupt antiquated and inefficient outlets for networking,” the company says in a not-so-subtle dig at LinkedIn.

Bumble, founded in 2013, has enabled more than 250 million woman-initiated “first move” interactions. Bumble is available for free from the App Store and is coming to Google Play on October 18.