“Hackers seek hackers in NYC for absurdly fun + challenging startup” That’s the title of the very peculiar ad posted by an unknown company.
It is said that they are funded by “some of the best investors in the world” and are looking for “social hackers.” Who can these guys be?
Well, they left a trail of clues to help us out:
1. The startup is in the winter 2012 batch of Y Combinator.
2. “We’re leading the online-to-offline revolution.”
3. “We’re relatively far along”
4. “We make money. We’re a real business, not a charity.”
5. “Both of the co-founders are technical and have previous startup experience (including at other YC startups and an app that scaled to billions of impressions per month).”
6. “We’re in New York, but if you’re not we can chat about getting you here to the greatest city on earth.”
7. “We’re all frequent users of our product, as it should be”
8. ”Our ultimate goal is to end loneliness and to create some amazing stories along the way.”
9. ”Users have already created thousands of these stories (offline) through our product.”
10. “We were fortunate enough to go to good schools (like MIT, Princeton, and Yale)”
After giving it some thought, the Sherlocks of the startup world think Grouper is a viable candidate.
The site “arranges drinks between two groups of friends who don’t know each other: 3 guys and 3 girls.” There’s the “online-to-offline revolution” and “sadness ending” bit.
The site is part of the current batch of YC startups and has been up since September (relatively far along) New York based cofounders Michael Waxman and Tom Brown went to “good schools”, Yale and MIT respectively.
Founders as frequent users? Waxman even found a girlfriend with the app.
Further digging revealed the similar wordings in Grouper’s job listing and the mysterious ad.