Brandon Wade’s struggle with romance inspired a revolution in online dating with the creation of Seeking.com, the most successful upscale dating website.
As a teenager, Seeking’s Founder and CEO Brandon Wade struggled with a lack of confidence, directly affecting his ability to interact with girls. Seeing Brandon’s heartache, his mother offered him a valuable piece of advice that would ultimately shape the rest of his life. “Focus on your school, don’t worry about dating, someday you’ll be successful and generous and all the girls will fight for your attention,” his mother told him—and from that point forward, school became his top priority.
Winning multiple science fairs and math olympiads throughout his early school years, he finished first in physics and third in mathematics in Singapore. An aspiring physicist, Brandon moved to the United States to study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he would pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics and Electrical Engineering and an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
MIT and Beyond
In college, Brandon’s dating life remained nonexistent but he finally had his first kiss at the age of 21. After graduating from MIT, Brandon went on to serve as a management consultant with Booz Allen and held executive roles at several Fortune 500 companies, including General Electric and Microsoft. While at such companies, Brandon realized that successful men have significantly less time than the average man to invest in developing and fostering romantic relationships.
While he was building a successful career, his love life continued to suffer. He tried a dating agency and dating websites like Match.com with no luck, realizing looks were all that mattered in video and online dating. There was no venue where people who are anything other than conventionally good-looking could shine or where successful, intelligent and interesting people could stand out.
The Birth of SeekingArrangement®
Deciding to take matters into his own hands in 2006, Brandon coded night and day for a month straight, and SeekingArrangement was born. The name “SeekingArrangement” was chosen because he wanted people to be upfront, honest, and transparent about what they want in relationships, a modern twist to a very traditional practice of arranged relationships or marriages. A new concept was created in the dating industry where intellectual and successful became the new “hot.”
2007 – 2015
The Sugar Revolution
While the concepts of sugar dating, sugar daddy and sugar baby have existed throughout history, most notably beginning in the 1500s, it wasn’t until the early 1900s that these terms were first put into use. However, it was SeekingArrangement that made the sugar dating concept a mainstream phenomenon. For the first 10 years, SeekingArrangement was featured in every major newspaper, television news show, and tabloid. Brandon’s dating life became so successful that he began to mistakenly believe the formula to a healthy dating life was centered around wealth and not love. In 2014, he even wrote an op-ed for CNN titled, “Love is a concept invented by poor people”.
2016 – 2020: Part I
The Corruption of Sugar
As sugar dating and the sugar lifestyle both became increasingly popular, the public frequently took the idea in a different direction. Instead of sugar being a dating lifestyle choice, people began to align it with negative terminology, attempting to stigmatize the concept and those individuals open about their relationships.
Sugar-related terms became corrupted due to three main factors:
- First, the escort/adult industry has misappropriated the terminology to attempt to recast their transactions as sugar relationships.
- Second, influencers posting “click bait” content on social media by mistreating “sugar dating” as transactional relationships (which is not what was ever designed on SeekingArrangement) to get clicks from their sensationalism.
- Third, advocacy groups have mislabeled and then used SeekingArrangement as their strawman villain in their efforts to drive narratives about how people, particularly young women, should act and date.
2016 – 2020: Part II
Protecting the Community
Despite these challenges, SeekingArrangement continued to grow rapidly. To ensure the protection of the community from being exploited, SeekingArrangement underwent the following proactive steps:
- Development of an enhanced age identification and verification technologies
- Establishment of a 45-member global community moderation team
- Implementation of keyword detection and image moderation AI technologies
- Integration of anti-scammer software
- Participation as a founding member of Freedom Light (a non-profit organization focused on preventing all human trafficking)
- Proactively supporting anti-trafficking organizations through both contributions and outreach programs
2021 – Present
The Seeking® Evolution
To further pave the path for personal choices in dating and clarify the founding principles SeekingArrangement has always stood for, the company recently launched a complete rebranding effort to both modernize the brand while evolving with the ever-changing dating landscape. However, SeekingArrangement has not entered into this next phase lightly. The company began with collecting feedback from thousands of members to better understand their needs, usage, challenges and relationship goals.
We have taken these incredible insights to redesign SeekingArrangement to align with our members aspirations and to help people find and foster genuine connections, ones wherein everyone is honest and open to define their own ideal relationships. Members will start seeing some significant changes to the website. We have shortened our name to be simply Seeking, as it has become synonymous with our website.
We will continue to use the well-known SeekingArrangement brand in our marketing, while at the same time we are moving away from sugar dating terms, focusing instead on the non-transactional principles of dating up. In addition to terminology and design changes, members can expect to see more community and public education and user enforcement.
Our goal remains steadfast in helping success-minded people find what truly makes them happy, whether it is romance, travel, luxury, freedom or whatever it is they aspire to in their connections.