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Unless you've been living under a rock, you must have surely heard over last few weeks about the next big IPO on the cards. Bumble, a popular online dating app & strong competitor of Tinder, is set to IPO in February 2021.

Not just another IPO

Bumble's IPO stands out for a few reasons:

- The app & the company are all about empowering women - the app has a women-first interface and the company's board has a whopping 71% women!

- Its CEO, Whitney Herd, is just 31-years old and will be the youngest CEO to IPO in history.

- The company focuses strongly on diversity & inclusion, not just in terms of gender but also race, color, religion among others.

- Finally, the company has been hiring for freelance & fully remote positions even before Covid, so its always had a hybrid remote working model (65% remote workforce prior to 2020) - a lesser known fact.

Building a diverse workforce

Bumble's stance around building the company and the app to be women-centric is already talked about and appreciated a lot. However, the less talked about aspect is how the company also encourages diversity across other parameters including the choice of working full-time or part-time and whether from their HQs in Austin/London or from anywhere in the world.

Bumble's workforce largely comprises of freelancers & contractors that are spread across the world. Only 70-odd employees are full-time and work from their offices in US & UK.

WFH during Covid and future plans of going remote?

Of course the entire company is working remotely since March 2020 and has adapted really well to the sudden remoteness situation. Niki Agrawal, product manager at Bumble, wrote a blog about their experience working remotely and how they have come to love it. She writes in detail about the advantages the remote life has brought in and new virtual traditions that have emerged - example, wine-from-home Fridays where people gather on hangouts after 6:30pm with a glass of wine or coffee or juice and just catch up with everything that's been going on.

Niki goes on to say that she (and her team) wouldn't mind making the remoteness permanent. There's no announcement from the company yet but given their experience, it seems like a very logical next step.

Until then, let's wait & see if this venture-backed IPO hits it out of the park just like the previous ones (Airbnb, DoorDash).


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