8 July, 2015
Influencers, Lifestyle

Dawoon Kang of Coffee Meets Bagel – The Girl Behind Hong Kong’s Latest Dating App

8 July, 2015

Dating in Hong Kong is no mean feat. It seems like there are slim pickings for Sassy Girls, and if you’ve exhausted that Tinder radar then it might be time to try something new! Enter Coffee Meets Bagel, the latest free dating app to hit Hong Kong. Coffee Meets Bagel is an app that aims to connect you with quality people in a private and safe way. Every day, you’re paired with one ‘bagel’ or match at noon, and you have 24 hours to “like” or “pass” on your bagel. If both you and your bagel “like” each other, you’re then connected through a private and secure chat line which you can use for seven days… the goal is to find you that one match that really works!

The philosophy of Coffee Meets Bagel is that dating doesn’t have to be awkward or complicated, and this app certainly makes the whole process a lot easier. We had the chance to catch up with one of the founders of Coffee Meets Bagel, Dawoon Kang, to find out more about the app and her tips and tricks for dating in HK!

coffee meets bagel dawwon kang cards
Your co-founders are your sisters, how does that work?
I love working with my sisters. We fight about certain things, but at the end of the day they are the most incredible business partners. I have 100% faith and trust in them, and not many people can say that about their business partners, so I feel very privileged.

Tell us what inspired you and your sisters to create Coffee Meets Bagel?
Living in New York City in our late twenties, we noticed that a lot of our friends were having trouble meeting new and interesting people to date. There wasn’t a shortage of eligible bachelors or bachelorettes in the city at the time, it was just that all the young, working professionals didn’t have the time to date. We thought that this was an interesting problem, and we were surprised that there weren’t many products on the market to help solve it. We thought that it was a good opportunity to set up a cool new dating site, that women could get excited about and feel comfortable using.

coffee meets bagel dawoon kang 2Is there a story behind the name “Coffee Meets Bagel?”
Coffee breaks are something that all young, working professionals look forward to, so we decided to centre our service around that. Coffee breaks in New York city are never complete without a good New York bagel, so we decided to name our company after this perfect combination. The name Coffee Meets Bagel is just really fun and lighthearted!

Tell us a little more about the app itself… What makes it different from other dating sites?
Coffee Meets Bagel does a good job at managing perceptions. First and foremost, it is easy for people to manipulate the way their profile looks on a dating site, but Coffee Meets Bagel uses Facebook to ensure that all of our member’s profiles are honest. Yes, people can still exaggerate their life on Facebook, but they are less likely to outright lie about themselves on it because they are still accountable to all of their other Facebook friends. Coffee Meets Bagel also uses Facebook to match our members with other members who share a mutual friend or two.

coffee meets bagel dawoon kang coupleWhat type of person uses Coffee Meets Bagel?
Young professionals who are living in urban places – like Hong Kong. Our members are very busy with their work, and they are typically between the ages of 21 and 35.

Why do single guys and gals need Coffee Meets Bagel in a city like Hong Kong?
Hong Kong is like New York on steroids. It’s a fast paced city. People are always on the go, and they are doing a billion things at once, so they have very limited time. This makes Coffee Meets Bagel the perfect app for Hong Kongers. Coffee Meets Bagel is a very efficient dating service, and we hope that we can help many young and single professionals find their perfect bagel!

coffee meets bagel dawoon kang 3Any dating advice for singles in Hong Kong?
Don’t take your date somewhere super fancy just to try and impress them; pick somewhere familiar. Let’s face it, dating can be scary, especially the first date, so try to pick a restaurant where you will feel comfortable and know how to act.

What are your favourite date-night restaurants and bars in Hong Kong?
I love Lily in LKF. It’s in a great location, it has a wonderful menu and its a fun spot without being too noisy. Sevva is also always a classic choice for a dinner-date, the food is simple but delicious, and the atmosphere is always buzzy.

coffee meets bagel dawoon kang 4Where do you go when you want to let your hair down and have fun with your girlfriends in Hong Kong?
My friends and I love to hike, and Hong Kong has great access to nature, so we go hiking a lot (see Sassy’s Top Beginner Hikes here!). I really love the hikes out in the New Territories; the beaches out there are incredible.

Do you have any advice for aspiring app creators ?

  1. Talk about your app and reach out to as many people as possible.
  2. Research your target market. You need to really understand who they are and what they want for your app to be successful.

All the photos above were taken by the wonderful Sasha Tory of Sassy Media Group.








Back to top