December 1, 2023

The founder and chief executive of one of the biggest dating apps in the world is stepping down after nearly 10 years in charge.

Whitney Wolfe Herd, who created the company in 2014, will become Bumble Inc’s executive chair.

She will be replaced by Slack boss Lidiane Jones, who will take up the role in January.

Ms Wolfe Herd said she was passing the “the baton to a leader and a woman I deeply respect”.

The 34-year-old Ms Wolfe Herd became the world’s youngest self-made female billionaire when she took Bumble public in February 2021.

She created the company in 2014, and differentiated the app to rivals by putting women in control of interactions.

Ms Wolfe Herd has said she was inspired to create a platform where women “make the first move” by her frustration with archaic gender norms controlling dating.

Unlike most dating apps, only female users can make the first contact with matched male users, while in same-sex matches either person can send a message first.

Just after its flotation, Bumble Inc’s shares hit a high of $75 but have since tumbled and, following the announcement that Ms Wolfe Herd is stepping down, they dropped to an all-time low of $12.77.

Match Group, Bumble’s rival which owns Tinder and Hinge, has also seen its share price drop in that time.

However, Ms Wolfe Herd said she was “incredibly optimistic about the future”.

“I believe in Bumble Inc’s significant potential today more than ever before,” she added.