Hot or Not, the once-popular website where users voted on others’ attractiveness, is making a mobile comeback.
Owned by UK-based online dating company Badoo, the revamped service uses location-based data to show you the most attractive people around you. Hot or Not also plans to display
customised Hot Lists, based on how its users vote on the fake profiles of easily recognisable actors, politicians, celebrities, and other public figures, Peter Lauria at BuzzFeed reports.
Users can connect their Hot or Not profiles to Facebook, allowing the app to autofill their Hot or Not profiles with their Facebook likes and profile pictures. The “game” section of Hot or Not allows users to browse the profiles of other Hot or Not users in their area and rate them with a heart — hot — or an X — not. Users can also strike up private conversations with other Hot or Not users.
Badoo has roughly 200 million users in 180 countries, but Andreev is most interested in using Hot or Not’s relaunch to infiltrate the sought-after U.S. market. “The U.S. is the most tasty market,” Andreev said in a interview with BuzzFeed. “Imagine you have a cake with chocolate and roses on top, this is what the U.S. market is.” James Hong and Jim Young, the original founders of Hot or Not, reportedly sold the site for $US20 million.
Andreev has hired Justine Sacco, the former communications director for Barry Diller’s IAC. Sacco was fired last year after posting a controversial tweet before a trip to Africa. She quickly apologized for the social media gaffe and stayed in Ethiopia for a month earlier this year as a volunteer consultant for an NGO. Sacco is reportedly helping with Hot or Not’s promotion and relaunch.
Russian entrepreneur Andrey Andreev, who launched Badoo in Spain in 2006, has had luck with the international online dating service in Europe and Latin America. Andreev has financial backing from Russian investment firm Finam, which seeded him with $US30 million for a 10% stake in the company.