Shahzad Younas’s Muslim dating application assisted 15,000 partners meet to get hitched. He informs Amelia Heathman about contemporary love

The expression goes: ‘Muslims don’t date, we marry’,” claims Shahzad Younas, creator and CEO associated with the Muslim matching software Muzmatch. “It’s a generalised expression but it strikes the nail from the mind. If I’m fulfilling a woman, we’re both reasoning, is this individual wedding product?”

Muzmatch can be dubbed the Muslim Tinder but Younas just isn’t so pleased with the contrast. It utilizes some typical dating-app structures, such as for instance swipes and likes, but alternatively of targeting casual hook-ups it’s all about assisting Muslims find anyone to marry.

Numerous Muslims are expected to marry young and also to somebody of this faith that is same. Choices consist of working together with a matchmaker, which computer technology graduate Younas defines as “like getting your CV passed around” to locate a partner that is appropriate. So that it had been back 2014, after hearing their buddies swap tales about dating battles, which he made a decision to produce an software that could make the dating process more “halal” — acceptable in religious legislation.

Younas quit their job as a good investment banker and invested half a year working days that are 18-hour produce Muzmatch inside the room. Half a year after establishing, the application had produced its very very first wedding.

“A few got in contact to state ‘thank you, we got hitched due to your app’. I happened to be like, OK, this is certainly real,” he said. The outcomes talk on their own: Muzmatch has multiple . 5 million people plus some 15,000 partners ‘ve got hitched after fulfilling onto it.

It produced title it me you’re trying to find? for it self outside of the Muslim community by way of an advertising campaign that went in the Tube this past year featuring Lionel Richie singing: “Halal, is” with regards to rivals, the software ranks greater for packages compared to other religious-focused matching apps including JSwipe (Jewish) and Salt (Christian), based on analytics business App Annie, so it’s no wonder the big relationship organizations came knocking.

Younas won’t mention who, but states he has turned them straight straight down everytime. “We’re on a objective to change how Muslims across the world think of marriage, and obtain married.”

Lots of work gets into making sure Muzmatch is a space that is safe Muslims to talk and satisfy on the web. In 2016, the working platform introduced selfie verification to make certain everybody regarding the application is whom they state they truly are. The business includes a group in Bangladesh which, alongside its HQ in Aldgate, manually moderates every profile.

Other privacy features are embedded. Users can request a chaperone be there in conversations in the application, such as for example a relative, as per an Islamic principle that after unmarried both women and men chat a party that is third be there. Users also can make sure they’ve no profile image on the account or details such as for example their name that is full they may be as private online as you can. “It’s about knowing that Muslims are incredibly diverse so we don’t wish to force individuals down a road that is particular. We should function as space that is safe offer top-level privacy to your users,” says Younas.

Security is vital for any other reasons. “We get lots of EDL kinds and people that are right-wing that you great deal of abuse — putting up Bin Laden photos and all sorts of that form of stuff,” claims Younas. “The positive thing is they get spotted quickly and eliminated so we can block those users in a permanent method.” Regarding the upside, Muzmatch comes with non-Muslims registering since they’re interested in the religion, such the man that is 50-plus changed into Islam after fulfilling somebody from the software. “The individual tales can be pressing. We’re wanting to tread that type of being available but equally being faithful to our community. It’s a tricky line to walk down but We think we’ve nailed it.”

Therefore what’s next? The start-up has achieved profitability as a result of its premium paid-for tier nevertheless the next phase is to keep to enhance the app as well as its features, and expand the group and its particular reach. find a bride “Purely for a figures foundation, one-fifth worldwide is Muslim,” claims Younas. “On top of the, we estimate there remain 400 million Muslims who’re solitary and qualified. We glance at that, and we’ve not produced dent.”

To greatly help Muzmatch with its objective, the start-up has now announced the close of a large show A money round for $7m. Investors included respected Silicon accelerator that is valley-based Combinator – Younas participated into the programme back 2017 – also as Luxor Capital.

“Shahzad has demonstrably made a thing that individuals want,” claims Tim Brady, someone at Y Combinator. “He is really a resourceful creator whom happens to be hearing their users plus in the procedure has continued to develop a great solution for the Muslim community, in a fashion that conventional organizations have actually did not do.”

Beyond bringing individuals together, Younas additionally really wants to change attitudes into the Muslim world to ensure that marriage is approached in a contemporary means. “My vision is whenever Muslims around the globe think of engaged and getting married Muzmatch pops into the mind — and it also feels as though a clear, non-taboo move to make,” he states. “I always think Muslims are five years behind the main-stream, particularly when it comes down to technology. Now it is time to allow them to get caught up.”