Venture Corner: IvyDate

HBS Alumni Helping Elite Students Find Romance

An Interview with Philip Triebel, Founder of IvyDate

Opening by Stephen Hartley, Ivy Date

High in demand and short on time, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for students to find their soul-mates. Fortunately,workaholic Ivy League students have a new service to help: IvyDate.

Harvard Business School alumni Beri Meric(‘10) and Philipp B. Triebel (’10) have recently developed a new dating service,, which connects singles, alumni, and current students, from Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, MIT, Columbia, Brown, the University of Pennsylvania, Dartmouth, Cornell, Oxford, Cambridge, and London School of Economics.

Francois de Lame, an employee of IvyDate, says that the service immerses members in a dating environment that, “connects amazing singles who value intelligence replica breitling, creativity, and ambition.”

However, before one can connect with other available singles, one has to apply and be approved as a member of IvyDate (Yes, it’s as exclusive as the Ivy League).

Applying and receiving matches is free, and once one becomes a member, the website states that you can, “receive preferred access to exclusive events, dating experts, and high end dating related products and services.” The website also lauds its exceptional privacy settings as a good tool for those who want to keep their love search low key.

Exclusivity and high standards, sounds like IvyDate knows its market.

Q&A with IvyDate founder, Philipp B. Triebel

Is it smart to start a venture straight out of HBS?

I absolutely believe so! The learning opportunity is tremendous – as an entrepreneur, you are involved in all aspects of an organization, from strategy, marketing, business development to HR and legal issues. It also forces you to make tough decisions all the time. Starting a venture is also an extremely rewarding experience when the business starts to affect the lives of many people in the world. Having said that, entrepreneurship is very challenging and constantly forces you to be creative and innovative all the time.

Entrepreneurship is often referred to as a rollercoaster ride. What have been your personal ups and downs?

That is absolutely true and very reflective of my experience. You could come off closing a very lucrative partnership deal that could translate into thousands of new users and then – an hour later – have a customer complaining to you about one of the matches received. It’s very important to have a support network and continue to believe in what you do.

You could have started anything, but you started IvyDate – why replica watches uk?

We were looking at a number of entrepreneurial opportunities and decided to focus on IvyDate given the enormous potential for IvyDate vis-à-vis the other opportunities. We saw a significant gap in the market for men and women seeking to date highly intelligent, sophisticated singles with drive and determination. IvyDate aims to dominate this segment of the market by seamlessly connecting any interested single with the world’s best professionals, academics, artists, and executives.

What is your vision for IvyDate?

We want to create a global platform that connects well-educated, smart and driven singles across the globe. We want IvyDate to be the destination for all singles looking for amazing like-minded significant others. IvyDatewill be a lifestyle brand that provides access to the highest quality events, dating experts, venues, fashion brands, and much more.

To what extent has HBS helped your entrepreneurial pursuits?

The HBS alumni network really is a huge asset and opens the door to almost anyone. Professors have also been key supporters with our field study professor, Misiek Piskorski, being instrumental in creating this business with his advice, guidance, and inspiration. However, the peers from my HBS Class have no doubt had the biggest impact on my pursuits: They inspired me in the first place, and have been a continuous source of motivation, support and advice.

What drives you personally? Is it cash, fame, what?

I am driven to a high extent by the human element involved in connecting people whom we can relate to. This business, especially when you are focusing on the high end, meaningful part of the spectrum, is much more than numbers. We got into this business very rationally, but having been in the thick of it for a year, we are convinced beyond all doubt that IvyDate can be something that allows us to connect amazing people and we are very passionate about the impact we stand to have.

If you make a $100MM+ exit, what will you do?

First we want to make sure that IvyDate becomes all that it can, and that is certainly bigger than a $100MM exit. Having had the opportunity to build one business it’s hard to think of doing anything but creating a second business. I have many business ideas and would love to execute on the most attractive as the next project. I would also devote money to making angel investments in high potential entrepreneurs.

What are the three key pieces of advice you would give to aspiring entrepreneurs at HBS?

Believe in yourself and your idea regardless of what other people say. But, be adaptable and willing to constantly challenge and adjust your business model. Work hard towards to your vision, but never forget to enjoy the ride!