It’s Valentine’s Day, so what better time to interview Vana Koutsomitis, the self-proclaimed dating expert and finalist of this year’s U.K. version of The Apprentice.Koutsomitis almost certainly qualifies as a serial entrepreneur, having previously founded The CityStreet, a sort of Facebook for the banking and financial services sector, and most recently launched her own brand of wine called ‘Vino By Vana‘.
The latter she developed when she was forced to go on gardening leave between the last day’s filming of The Apprentice and when the show airs and the winner is actually announced.
However, her latest project (and the startup idea she pitched on the show) is DatePlay, a new dating app that promises to gamify the online dating process.
Specifically, it aims to eliminate ‘self reporting’ — the tendency to create an online profile as you’d want to be seen rather than how you actually are — which, argues Koutsomitis, typically results in a string of poor matches and, ultimately, the failure of online dating. That’s something she’s determined to fix.
Listen to a lightly edited version of the interview below.