We catch up with Aisha and Piou, the founders behind Passion Fruut, the brand new dating app for queer women in the UK. Hear all about what inspired them to go on this incredible journey.
1. Before setting up Passion Fruut, what did you previously do?
We come from two completely different backgrounds. I (Aisha) have a background in sales and creative arts, studying Musical Theatre at the BRIT school.
Piou has a background in computer software engineering and has been working in this field since University graduation.
2. What inspired you to want to create a new dating app for queer women?
Aisha: My personal experience growing up as a bi-sexual girl in Kent motivated me to create the app. My friendship group at the time was mainly straight. Because I didn’t know of any girls or women who had the same sexuality as me, the discovery of my sexual identification felt quite isolating. I would consider myself to be quite a femme, and I think this also led to people assuming I was straight, even in queer spaces.
These factors all led to me feeling like I didn’t have a clue how to start getting to know LGBTQ+ women, not just as love interests but also as friends, people that could relate to my journey.
As I got to University and met new people from across the UK, I realised a lot of queer womxn had a similar experience. I wanted to create a platform that would help resolve those issues I faced. You don’t have to look a particular way, live in a certain place or know anyone in particular. The only prerequisite is that you are a female-identifying individual within the LGBTQ+ community.
There are a few dating apps available for queer women, but there are a plethora of straight dating apps around. So we feel there is room in the market for more options, why not?!
3. How did you end up working together?
I’d consider myself to be very creative, so the ideation process and refining our user interface with feedback groups was something that felt familiar to me. But I’m not technically minded at all!
Piou is far more technically inclined. I discussed the idea for Passion Fruut with Piou who really loved and believed in the app.
We both took whatever money we had and worked collaboratively to take my idea and logistically strategise the best way to make it a reality.
4. Do you have previous experience in this field?
Neither of us have previous experience in app development. Which has made this journey all the more exciting.
5. On your journey what have you struggled with the most?
The lack of prior app development knowledge is what we struggled with most. As it is new ground, it’s been difficult at times to make accurate assumptions on how long certain aspects of the development process will take. We have learned that code is really sensitive and so making small changes can have huge effects, which adds to time until completion. These delays have meant it has taken us longer than expected to have a final product. It has been a massive learning curve and to now have an IOS app is a massive accomplishment for us both.
6. What is your greatest achievement so far?
This would have to be the users/ followers we have gained.
The community have been so supportive, we have been overwhelmed with how much encouragement and engagement we have had. To see our users grow and to get the feedback we have received encourages us to keep pushing to make Passion Fruut all it can be.
7. Do you consider yourselves to be entrepreneurs?
That’s a good question. We guess technically we are, but at the moment we feel more like young professionals trying to provide a service. We have loads more to achieve beforehand in our minds.
8. What are your aims and goals for Passion Fruut?
Our aim is to provide a safe, accessible platform for LGBTQ+ womxn to find a community, be themselves and make connections. Whether it’s a friendship, a casual relationship or Mx forever, it’s all-important and if we can make the process any easier for womxn out there, we’d be really happy.
9. What can Nonchalant readers get excited about?
We’re always thinking of cool new ways to make our app fun and interactive. As well as our new logo and app design being finalised, we’re super excited to announce our android app will be released in a matter of days! It has been a long time coming, we can’t wait to share it!
10. Who are your role models and why?
Aisha: It’s tough to whittle down! I think a lot of people have been positive influences for me in various ways. But I would say one of my biggest role models would have to be Audre Lorde. She was just magical and way ahead of her time. She spoke to the feminist in me before I even understood what a feminist was. She had such a profound insight and perspective. Every time I read her poetry, I felt so proud of my sexuality, my skin colour and gender. I’ve read some of her poetry seven or eight times now and each time I do I learn something new.
Piou: Just like Aisha, there have been a number of people who have had a positive impact on me. But I would say my parents are my role models. Knowing and seeing now that I am older, how much they have worked and been through for me and my siblings keeps me pushing to give them a better life.
11. If other females are looking to set up an app/business, what would your advice be?
Go for it! You’re not going to know everything right away and that’s okay. Try to let the things you feel most intimidated about be the force that drives you further into learning and discovery, eventually these things may even become what you love most! There are loads of forums and services that are really helpful. Try to always consider why you wanted to start a business/ make an app in the first place and let that answer guide the decisions you make. And have fun!
Thanks to Aisha and Piou for catching up with us on their exciting adventure on building a new dating app for queer women.
Make sure you support and check out the app here.
Team Nonchalant x