According to the latest census numbers (2008), women make $0.77 to every man's dollar (1) and the average revenues of majority women-owned businesses were still only 27% of the average of majority men-owned businesses (2). My hope for Sparking Cinderalla is to foster a community of support for female entrepreneurs as well as provide a little juicy insight into who these women are in their everyday lives. After all, as Mama Gena says, "Women are the greatest untapped natural resource in the world."

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Amber Soletti: One Stop Singles

Amber Soletti
Job Description: Co-Founder OneStop Singles LLC
Company info: (speed dating) (singles parties) (free online dating)

NYC based dating service that offers over 75 "themed" speed dating events and singles parties based on people's dating "deal-breakers" think physical preferences, political views, common interests, etc.  We also offer free online dating throughout the United States and Canada. Founded in September 2008


1. What made you decide to start your company?
I was 32, single, living in NYC and SO unimpressed with the dating scene. I had tried pretty much every singles event out there and then decided to give speed dating a go. I signed up for an event for singles 25-35. Upon arriving, I found myself surrounded by a sea of short, unattractive, socially awkward men. My first date started with the guy saying, “I know you, you’re on Match. Com. I emailed you 10 times and you never responded to me. I paid my $40 and now you have to talk to me for 8 minutes.” That brutal experience was the catalyst for me being inspired to create my own service where I could finally meet the type of men I was looking for.  Instead of offering events based on just age range, we host over 75 niche events themed around dating “deal breakers” and preferences like “Hot for Teacher”, “Men With Accents Are Hot”, “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes”, “Inked” for tattooed singles, “Non-Practicing Jew” night, and “Size Matters” for guys and gals with a hankering for height.

2. Where do you see your business in 5 years?
I see us expanding our "themed" speed dating & singles events into key markets across the United States and in Europe, while further growing some of our newer business divisions (matchmaking, and corporate party planning). We also have a new site currently in development called SingleSaver.Com which will offer "dating deals" and discounts on services and products key to a singles survival coupled by a social networking element that "deal-sites" like Groupon & LivingSocial are currently lacking. Also on my "to-do" list, hooking myself up with a man in the process.  

3. Who was your inspiration?
NYC singles like myself that are totally over the dating scene.  Despite being the 'singles capital of the world', NYC remains one of the hardest cities to have a relationship.  The way the majority of singles events were structured based on age range wasn't really helping our cause.  Think about it, are you more likely to connect with someone because they fall within your same 28-35 age range, or because they meet your height requirement, share your same political views and/or interests?  By taking a fresh and new approach, I was able to raise the bar on the NYC singles scene, while at the same time significantly improving both my income and dating life.

4. What turns you on?
I think confidence is a total turn-on.  As an entrepreneur it comes and goes, sometimes you have to fake it till you make it.

5. What advice do you have for tomorrow’s female entrepreneurs?
Make sure you have a strong point-of-difference.  I see "me too" companies launching every day that aren't doing anything different, or better than their competitors.  To really stand out and take market share you need to have a compelling point-of-difference that will separate you from the masses.

6. Tell us a sexy secret ;-) 
I did the Howard Stern Show which was an experience I'll never forget.  I also mix business and pleasure and despite popular belief, I highly recommend it!

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