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This will be the last post on our Company blog.
We should have probably done this a lot sooner, but with the year coming to an end, we finally decided to make this final step and officially close down the site.
Camlink was started in May 2007 and bootstrapped by the founders with the hope of eventually raising venture capital. At that time “Online Speed Dating” was a thing of the future and we thought Camlink would be the first to bring this innovative concept to market. The platform development was completed 5 months behind schedule and way over budget (over 2,500 man hours). This was also a first project for any of us that required significant capital and we had no idea how difficult the fund-raising process really is (we were looking for $2.5M). Over the last 9 months we have failed to materialize on any outside financing. Our competition was ahead of us from the day they came out of stealth mode in the fall of 2007. Since then both have secured B rounds of funding. SpeedDate has raised a total of $8.6M and WooMe raised a whopping $17.4M. The economic climate didn’t make this process easier. It seems that we were caught about 6 months too late with our start-up. I’m not sure if we would be successful otherwise, but we would have certainly had better chances without such dominant competitors already on the market with solid traffic. If we started 6 months later, we would see the competition on the horizon and not venture in.
We’ve also chose one tough area: Consumer Internet (web2.0) and Online Dating.
We gave Camlink a few months to gain traction, but without financing it made sense for us to call an end to this venture.
This was an exciting journey for all of us. During the time we had to wear many different hats, get little sleep and learn what it is to build an internet company.
Being an an entrepreneur isn’t easy but very exciting. The things we learned and the people we met along the way will be part of the next thing, whatever it is. We want to thank everyone that has helped, challenged and motivated us!
The site will remain up for some time, only for technical demo purposes.
On Thursday, July 24th we partnered with Ezra USA to throw our 3rd party. This was our last event at 49 Grove – which proved to be one of the nicest places.
We would continue throwing parties here, but I’m sure that our repeat goers are getting a bit tired of the same venue – so time for a change. Big thanks to the staff for hosting our events over the last few months. We became pretty good friends with the entire management team. I would highly recommend this venue for any corporate parties.
Click on the below image to view the pictures from the party (on Flickr)
Speed Dating was fun as always. The matches have already been emailed to those who participated.
The rest is up to you! Please keep us in the loop, as we’re looking for testimonials. And I’m sure no one minded the substitution of Grey Goose for the open bar.
Better than any happy hour in town:
2 Hour Vodka Open Bar ($10 cover) 7:30 – 9:30pm
Powered by V2 Vodka (Grey Goose was substituted last minute due to a conflict between the sponsor and the place)
Reduced beer all night ($5)
As always the event featured Speed Dating sessions in the back sound-proof room. Each session gave an opportunity to meet 8 super sexy singles for 5 minutes each.
Now time to plan the next party which will be late August or early September.
At our launch party everyone had such a good time that we got dozens of requests to have these events monthly. We agreed!
See pictures from our last event.
The next event in at the same great venue: 49 Grove
This time we are experimenting on Friday, so everyone can stay out as late as possible and not worry about the work the following day. We are featuring 2 hour vodka open bar and speed dating sessions in the back (limited number of spots).
When: Friday, June 6, 8:00PM
Vodka Open Bar 8-10pm ($10 cover)
Sponsored by V2 Vodka
Unlike last event which was invite only, this one is open to the public.
No need to RSVP. FEEL FREE TO BRING YOUR FRIENDS!
Camlink will feature Speed Dating sessions in the sound proof back room. Now you will have the opportunity to meet 8 eligible singles without using some corny pickup lines. Each session will be 5 minutes in length. The cost to participate will be $10.
This was an amazing event! Thank you to everyone who joined us at 49 Grove to celebrate our launch. We had 370 people in attendance, and all 72 bottles of VOX Vodka were consumed. Big thanks to our sponsor VOX Vodka & DeKuyper – which created the perfect Camlink colored Martinis. Shout out to DJ Dean Michaels who kept it pumping the entire night! We noticed that even at the party, some people “linked up”.
We are excited to announce the public launch of Camlink.com – the new and exciting way to meet people online. Please see the Press Release that went out on the wire this morning. Over the last 2 months, we have been working with our 80 beta testers to fine tune the system. Opening membership to the public is a huge and exciting step for us. Not only will singles now be able to meet even more people, but this initiative will also provide us with more feedback on the site itself, allowing us to create the most user-friendly experience. We highly welcome your feedback and suggestions!
Posted By Ilya Posted in Conference | Comments Off
Today Camlink presented at the New Jersey Venture Conference. Big hand to NJTC and all the sponsors for making this a very successful event. As always, we had a pleasure networking and speaking about opportunities with Online Speed Dating.
Serge Kalinskiy appeared on this week’s NextNYers. nextNYers is a weekly web series hosted by Courtney Nichols, which interviews the top executives of the hottest up-and-coming technology, new media and Web 2.0 companies in New York. We would like to thank everyone involved with the production of this hot new series. Serge discussed how his experience with online dating sites yielded to the launch of Camlink. Just to clarify something which was edited in this video – Camlink plans to have about 500k-750k video impressions before we implement video advertising. We project that we will need 60,000 active users for us to do this – this is not our target # of users for the year as the “What we learned about Camlink.com section” hinted. We hope to reach this milestone in Q3 of this year. Please see this video on Viddler or Revver in Quicktime format.
We are excited to announce the launch of our private beta. Now there’s a new way to link people together just in time for Valentine’s Day! Please see the Press Release that went out on the wire this morning. Over the last few months, we have been working with our friends and family to work out all the bugs. Thank you for your time and the valuable feedback! This week we will be going through the list of hundreds on invite requests that people submitted and sending out the invite emails. The private, invite only beta is scheduled to take place for the next 2 months for us to perfect the user interface, design and add the requested features. We are looking forward to the comments and feedback from our users.
The Camlink team attended the Internet Dating Conference / Social Networking Conference on Jan 31 – Feb 1st in Miami. This is the largest industry event that covers the business management of an Internet Dating and Social Networking websites. This was our first iDate conference and we weren’t sure what to expect… It’s a very strategic event, with the ability to examine the industry trends and vision, as well as connect with other executives. We got to showcase our solution a few days before the upcoming beta launch, give away some webcams, and more importantly make new friends! The feedback to Online Speed Dating was great! Our T-shirts “When 10 dates in one night isn’t cheating” also got a lot of laughs and requests. Coming from NYC, the weather was awesome – as this gave us a well needed vacation.
Today Camlink made the first public appearance at the NY Video 2.0 Meetup in front of an audience of about 400. The event took place at the legendary Webster Hall Grand Ballroom. I must say that this is one of the best technology meetups in New York and now at the new great venue it will be even better! It’s funny how the demos never go as planned when you’re on stage (I joined the wrong event). A big thanks to Yaron for the opportunity to present! You can watch the full video on Viddler. As Yaron jokingly suggested, we now need to create NY Video 2.0 Singles group. It seemed that everyone in the audience had a webcam – unfortunately that’s not the case for the majority of internet users today. I also wanted to thank Peter Verkooijen for allowing us to present Camlink back in November at Web2NewYork Meetup.
Welcome to Camlink and our Blog! For the last few months our team has been working hard to bring our vision to life. Here you will be able to read about all the happenings at Camlink and the evolution of Online Speed Dating.
We hope to revolutionize the way the public experiences online dating by bringing the concept of Speed Dating online. Online Speed Dating is an innovative and fun way for people to connect real‐time using the latest video streaming technology. There are no long questionnaires or seas of profiles to wade through. The misleading pictures from ten years and thirty pounds ago are gone as well. From the comfort of their home, users will be able to have a series of short online dates with other members. Best of all, the system offers users immediate results!
We believe that traditional online dating sites are slowly losing their novelty factor and are struggling to deal with evolving social needs. In this fast‐paced world we live in, more and more people are looking for simple, time‐saving options for everything – even dating. Camlink is the answer!