High There! is the business of the month that TNMNews.com is spotlighting as more and more states legalize recreational marijuana. High There! has been in business since 2015 and is based out of Denver, CO. The team at High There! found that dating through traditional outlets had a big problem; there was no checkbox for “uses marijuana.”
Are you single? Have you experienced dating someone who doesn’t use marijuana or is against it? How did that relationship end for you or are you still together?
Founders: Todd Mitchem, Kenny Frisman and Darren Roberts
The pitch: Todd Mitchem was a recently divorced father trying to date again when he realized there was something about him that women seemed to find off-putting—his use of marijuana. Mitchem uses pot recreationally, which is legal in Colorado, where he lives. He thought that in Denver it wouldn’t be hard to meet women who also used it recreationally too, or at the very least, didn’t care that he did. But the women he met were uncomfortable with it.
And it wasn’t just dating that was problematic. Mitchem’s mother is a cancer survivor who used cannabis to help her when she was in treatment. During that time, however, a longtime neighbor and friend stopped speaking to her because of it. “She felt really isolated then,” recalls Mitchem. “And my cofounders and I heard other stories from medical users who felt isolated.” They got together and decided to create a social network and dating app–Mitchem describes it as Facebook crossed with Tinder—just for cannabis users.
How it works: Users of High There! download the app and then build a profile—writing 420 characters’ worth of information about themselves and then disclosing, says Mitchem, “how they prefer to consume and their energy level.” Instead of a static profile photo High There! has its users record a three-second video of themselves, usually saying hello. As soon as you see someone’s profile the video plays; tap it and the full profile opens up.
High There! is a way for cannabis users to become friends with and, if they choose, date, other cannabis users. The interface is similar to Tinder, swiping to move from one High There! member to the next. (All profiles must have photos.) The app has been approved for iOS and Android use.
Traction: Mitchem says the app has about 100,000 users and about 415,000 interactions occur on the platform each month.
Revenue and funding: The business has been funded by its founders, friends and family. So far they’ve raised about $700,000, says Mitchem, and are about to start a venture capital round. The company’s monetization plan hasn’t kicked in yet but should in the next six months. The app is free to users and will remain so, he says, but revenue will be driven in part by a combination of advertising and product endorsements. The company is exploring a variety of potential revenue streams.
The future: Mitchem wants High There! to become the preeminent social network for cannabis users worldwide. He met his last girlfriend on the app (although they have since parted ways). “I’ve met quite a few people on it, actually,” he says. “It’s been very successful for me.”