Partner Conference 2012 – Live!

The 4th annual Partner Conference got off to a great start this morning. After a few detours around the vast country estate that the Luton Hoo Hotel is campused in, all arrived in good time and ready to learn.

The morning’s sessions saw our Chief-Execs share their insights into where has come from, and more importantly, where it’s heading.

COO and Co-founder, Steve Pammenter kicked off proceedings by introducing the theme of this year’s conference: ‘World Class Expertise in White Label Dating’. Those world class expertise are clearly paying off, as Steve told attendees that in the past year, revenues have increased by 61%, alongside an impressive 138% growth in basic members.

Our CEO and Co-founder, Ross Williams, is next up to the podium to talk us through exactly what makes ‘Masters of the Niche Markets’. Ross highlighted where our platform will be moving in the coming months; by 2015, 50% of our business will be international, as we expand into new territories and continue to tackle competitors head-on.

“Our future is mobile. We know that’s what consumers want, so that’s what we’ll give them.” – Ross Williams

Up to the plate next was CTO, Barry Frost. Barry highlighted the Development vision and what’s in store for the platform in the next year. Impressively, the WLD Development team have invested a lot in enhancing platform performance by 45% and that’s just one of the projects undertaken in the last year. Barry drew attention to the opening of our London Office and it’s beautiful views, as a way of launching WLD further into the development hub.

“The addition of our London office will help us hire the best development talent in a competitive market place.” – Barry Frost

Next up, is the unveiling of an exciting new project for the platform. Check back for more after lunch!

The second part of the morning sparked a lot excitement in the conference room as we unveiled an exciting new technical development for the platform.

The revelation came in the form of a lively presentation from Senior Partner Manager, Lauren Barnes, and UX Designer Pete Lambert – ‘Mr Shapes and Colours’ himself. If you want to find out more about exactly what this new development is, keep an eye on our blog and your inbox (if you’re a partner) in the next couple of weeks.’s USA expansion has been a hot topic at this year’s Partners Conference. Commercial Development Director, Richard Gale, gave an insightful presentation which shed light on the lucrative USA dating market, worth an estimated $2 billion in 2012 alone. As our expansion accelerates with lightening speed, the physical presence of in America is high on our agenda;

“There is nothing more valuable than having people who live in America, people who work in America, people who know America.” Operations Director, Matthew Pitt further reiterated this sentiment;

“Don’t think like an American, be an American.”

Matthew divulged the finer details of our USA launch strategy and emphasised what this means for partners, as well as what are going to do to get them started.

Still to come today, we hear from Senior Partner Manager, Gary Taylor, who talks us through the developments on our Mobile Platform, plus we’ll hear from Head of CRM, Harry Lloyd. Before the day draws to a close with a summary of our strategy for 2013/4.

The latter part of the day brought a whole barrage of excitement. Gary Taylor emphasised the importance of Mobile; 28% of Google search queries now stem from Mobile and what’s more, Niche sites see conversions 25% higher than non-niche sites on Mobile.

Then Matthew Pitt was back again to talk us through international growth. 40% of all sites on the platform are currently international, with international revenues having climbed a staggering 205% in the last twelve months.

Head of CRM, Harry Lloyd gave an entertaining and though-provoking project brief, highlighting that Comms really do drive growth. Harry also announced the development of the ‘Happy Harry Great Comms Prize’. Our platform couldn’t survive without our partners, and as such – we want your input! The Comms team will take two suggestions for a campaign from each of our partners – the best will be tested and put into use and at next year’s conference, Happy Harry will announce the winner! Get your thinking caps on.

Richard Gale returned to the podium to explain the role of the freshly rebranded ‘Commercial’ team to our partners. Richard shared just some of the vast array of insights that the Commercial team have discovered in their endeavours so far. These ranged from the value of men versus women as customers to which forms of engagement with sites equate to conversions.

The podium was then thrown back to Steve and Ross to round up the day, before an excellent session from John Ray from Google. More on this next week!

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