Startup develops astrological algorithm to predict romance
If astrology can be used to predict such things as stock market crashes, surely it can help people make love connections. That was the thinking behind New York-based startup Moonit.com
After careers in financial services, Dana Kanze and Mason Sexton Junior decided to create Moonit.com as a way of using astrology to help people like them and their friends with their relationships. Sexton Junior’s interest in astrology came naturally as a result of his father, Mason Sexton Senior, an astrologer and investment manager. Sexton Senior, also a co-founder of Moonit.com, used astrology to predict market events (such as the stock market crash of 1987) and market timing.
The website uses astrology to determine relationship compatibility between two people (romantic, professional or friendships) by using an astrological algorithm. After entering the birth dates, users get a compatibility score and a relationship assessment.
“We found that when people are grappling with uncertainties in their relationships, they’re willing to consult different methodologies and sources out there,” said CEO Kanze. “Who we should be associating with and in which ways? We found there really weren’t a lot of social optimization tools to give you recommendations on those types of things.”
The website earns revenue from its virtual currency, referred to as “moon coins,” and from its $9.99 subscription program to provide text alerts.
Instead of needing to remember birth dates, Moonit.com allows users to pull their friends’ data from Facebook. The website also provides daily relationship horoscopes specific to two people which can be sent via email or text alert.
Kanze said their success rate is 70 percent based on user feedback provided in real time. She expected more people to sign up around Valentine’s Day. Moonit.com’s goal is to attain one million users in the next 12 months.
The website currently has 70,000 users, of which 70 percent are unsurprisingly female. “Females are the ones obsessing more over their relationships,” said Kanze. “It’s not astrology alone that is the driving force. It’s the desire to micromanage and improve relationships whereas for guys it’s not the driving force behind their day.”
Photo credit: A picture of the Moonit.com team. From left to right: Senior Developer Scott Raposa, Co-Founder & CEO Dana Kanze; Co-Founder & President Mason Sexton, Jr; and Developer Fatih Yildiz. Reuters/Courtesy Moonit LLC