Speed dating start-up Spefz is using an algorithm to match potential lovebirds at organised social events.

The London-based business was founded by former investment banker Richill Tamakloe and aims to remove the lottery associated with speed dating events.

Its name is a mash-up of ‘Speed Friends’.

“Speed dating traditionally works by gathering a random collection of people together – so the probability of meeting someone who shares the same values and outlook on life is pretty low,” Tamakloe said.

“I wanted to change this outcome.”

The Spefz platform is designed around a simple but effective auto-match algorithm – built by Tamakloe – which is based on interests, personality and physical appearance.

Analysis of rating information provided by members generates a list of potential matches which allows the Spefz team to host events for each profile group and improve the potential for finding a life partner.

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The British-Ghanaian founder originally began working on the concept while in full-time employment at an investment bank in Geneva, but suffered a major setback when her developer moved away.

Tamakloe then left her job and relocated to London to study programming and gained experience by working with other start-ups in the city, giving her the skills, access to “genius” mentors and the confidence to build the Spefz online platform herself.

“I didn’t actually set out to get into speed dating. My original idea was to improve the profiling of networking events – my own experience of attending these types of events in Switzerland was disappointing,” she said.

“It was only after talking to friends and researching the speed dating sector that I realised my idea for an algorithm screening system was ideally suited to this application.

“In fact, there was a gap in the market for a matching service based on interests, personality and physical appearance.”

Following the UK launch, the team plans to take the concept to other vibrant cities around the world including New York, Lagos and Accra within the first 12 months of operation.

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