While many socially-focused apps focus on connecting individuals, Danish startup Heaps takes a bit of a different approach, providing a platform for groups to organize parties and then spice things up even further by hooking up with other groups.
Heaps works by prompting users to sign-in with Facebook and then invite the friends that you want in your group. Then, they are prompted to create a group on Heaps, which then suggests groups to join. Heaps has opted to follow the model of Tinder, allowing users to swipe through suggested groups, tossing away the ones that do not interest them and declaring interest in others. If two groups swipe right to declare interest, a match is created and a push notification is sent to each member of both parties. Heaps remains completely free to use, as one of the co-founders tells me that they are currently more worried about building the service than monetization.
Startups do not always brag about their “origin story”, but Heaps is happy to do so, revealing that the inspiration for the business came when the co-founders were hanging out in an apartment on a cold night in February. They decided that they wanted to have a party, but since nobody was really available at the time, they did not have many options. They noticed a group of girls have a party in the opposite apartment and wanted to get their attention in order to have a party, but, unable to do so, they simply ended up at a bar. So, while they did not end up meeting the girls in that apartment, they decided that this was a possible business opportunity and set to work building Heaps.
Heaps entered public beta in Copenhagen last year and attracted more than 40,000 users throughout Scandinavia in just a couple of months (they tell me that they are now up to 85,000). Just this week, the startup revealed that they have obtained an undisclosed amount in funding from a group of investors that includes Gary Vaynerchuk’s Vayner/RSE, Vine star Logan Paul (who has more than 8.7 million followers on the platform), and several angels, money that they intend to put towards the startup’s American (Los Angeles, more specifically) launch, which was announced simultaneously.