Brian Sachetta, BC ’12 and Sam Davidson created “Who’s That” after becoming frustrated with other meetup apps like Grouper. The pair sought to change and improve the way people meet up and go out on the weekends, while giving users control of who and where they meet.
“You don’t have really much control of where you’re going, who you’re going with—we went on a couple of these and felt it wasn’t really worth it,” Sachetta said of Grouper. Sachetta also highlighted the changing social dynamic following graduation. “Once you graduate from college, there isn’t as much opportunity for the big social interactions,” he said. Sachetta hopes that Who’s That will give people the opportunity to meet new people with a better experience than its competition.
Sachetta became interested in programming during his time as an undergraduate in the Carroll School of Management, where he studied computer science. “I really enjoyed some of the stuff that I was doing in that program, and so I decided to do a lot more than what was required,” he said.
Sachetta has plenty of experience developing apps. He previously worked on Sermo, a social network for doctors and MeterAid, an app which leverages data to help drivers avoid parking tickets. Sachetta, currently an iOS developer at Intrepid Pursuits LLC, works on Who’s That for about 20 hours a week in his free time, while Davidson works on it full-time. “I’ve probably built or had my hand in 10 to 15 apps over the past two years,” Sachetta said.
Who’s That utilizes Facebook’s API to connect groups of friends who want to go out together. A group of three friends will choose when they are available to go out and are shown pictures of another group. After selecting the group that they want to go out with—“Tinder style”—the app shows more information about the group including age, location, college, mutual friends and other interests.
This information is used to casually connect the groups in person and eliminate some of the typical awkwardness upon meeting each other. “We want to give users this information so that you can build a connection before you get there,” Sachetta said. Following a match, and after setting a location, the app will order a round of drinks for the group for $10 per person. This is to ensure that groups don’t fail to show up.
“It’s a way for you and your friends to go out and meet a different group of friends at a bar in Boston and have a good time,” he said.
Currently, Who’s That has partnerships with bars and establishments around the city of Boston, including nearby Cityside and a Boston College student favorite, Patron’s, where you can book a reservation through the app with your group. Who’s That’s concierge reaches out to the groups via e-mail to inform them that everything is set up, and allows the groups to chat within the platform.
“We have about 10-12 bars on the service and like the fact that we give people a decent amount of variety and have essentially a bar in almost every popular neighborhood in Boston,” Sachetta said.
The app, currently only available on iOS devices, has about 5,000 users in its database, most of whom are recent graduates, or college students. Sachetta hopes that Who’s That will see more users on the app after the duo rolls out its next update, which is planned to launch in the coming days.
“Our goal is to improve engagement, and get people out, rather than a bunch of one way interactions,” he said. Davidson and Sachetta have raised about $65,000 in the past month which will go towards development and marketing for user acquisition.
Sachetta says that the next step for Who’s That is to polish and sure up the app’s features to ensure that they have a product that users want. Sachetta believes that this is the best way for Who’s That to raise more capital in the future.
“We hope to move our metrics up—which will hopefully allow us to go to VCs [venture capitalists] and raise a much bigger round,” he said. After talking to many in the startup community, the duo is confident that Who’s That is a solid product with a user base, but notes that it is too early to yield an investment from VCs.
“The goal this summer is to get the metrics up and be able to go at it full time and take it to various cities across the country,” Sachetta said.
He’s excited for the potential growth of Who’s That, and believes that the group socializing app has the ability to be the go to on-demand social app, “We want to be known as the business that you consider when you think about going out,” Sachetta said.
Featured Image by Breck Wills / Heights Graphic