Gay and lesbian singles in the city have a new matchmaking resource: Q-Vault. Founded by Nicci Sprouse, Joel Diaz and Jason Gonzales, Q-Vault is designed to facilitate quality introductions and, hopefully, many happy relationships along the way.
“Everyone wants to be in a relationship and be loved,” says Sprouse. “We are providing that opportunity. We are helping singles find the relationships they are looking for instead of continuing to waste their time on their own. There is clearly a need in Columbus for an alternative to bars and hook-up sites, a way for singles to meet someone of their caliber that is like-minded and seriously searching for a committed relationship.”
Read our interview with Sprouse and Diaz to learn how they go about helping clients, why they think Q-Vault will be a success, and which organization will receive a portion of the company’s profits.
The Metropreneur: First, what do you do for clients?
Nicci Sprouse: We provide personalized matchmaking expertise that is really all about a more qualified introduction than ever available through other services or online. By taking the time to meet in person with our clients and truly getting to the heart of their wants and desires in a partner, we can weed out what they aren’t looking for and offer what they need− a quality introduction to someone that truly is a potential fit. We give our clients a step up in the dating game by only introducing them to hand-selected singles that truly are a potential fit. We also act as a concierge and take upon ourselves all of the date details, so it’s personalized and fitting for their personality. Whether its dinner at Barcelona or coffee at MoJoe Lounge on the cap, we ensure our clients have the best opportunity possible to get that often-elusive second date.
[M]: Are you targeting a specific type of user for the service?
Joel Diaz: We are targeting professional gay and lesbian individuals, those who are at a stage in their life where they’d like to meet someone and begin a committed relationship to enjoy life’s journey. It is important for us that individuals who utilize our service are prepared to invest themselves in this process as much as we are and that they see the benefits of a service like ours as an alternative to the traditional dating mechanisms that exist.
[M]: Nicci, have you taken anything you learned from running your own matchmaking service and applied it to the new one?
NS: I definitely have taken many experiences from Introductions by Ask Nicci and applied them to Q-Vault. My favorite would be getting out every day and meeting in person with clients. My purpose during these meetings is to get a strong gauge for what chemistry means to them. The basis for my introductions has always been attraction. I have found that all singles are attracted to different qualities in a mate, so by truly knowing our clients and matching their dates accordingly, a spark or chemistry is often achievable.
[M]: You refer to your dating service as Ohio’s first gay matchmaking company. Do you think there’s a particular reason no one else has attempted to launch a business like this?
JD: I don’t think anyone has had the skill sets that our team has to help make this a successful business. It’s one of the situations where the right people have come together at the right time to tap into an industry that has had minimal personalized service. Nicci’s background and experience as a matchmaker combined with my personal network and relationship management skills, along with Jason’s technical knowledge added to a market that is ripe for this type of service which is what we are looking to leverage through this venture.
[M]: What makes Columbus an ideal place for this type of dating service?
JD: Columbus is home to one of the largest LGBT communities in the country. The fact that we host the largest Pride celebration in the state and in the Midwest speaks to the fact that our town is an ever-growing nexus for the LGBT community. Columbus is a very open and accepting community, which helps facilitate the type of service that we are offering. Also, the fact that Columbus is a very transient city makes our service valuable. People move here from all over Ohio and the U.S. A service like ours will target a segment of the population that has not previously been served.
[M]: Q-Vault launched Feb. 1. Have you gotten much of a response yet?
NS: We are thrilled with the response thus far! Columbus has really embraced our company and we are looking forward to a great 2012!
[M]: Is there anything else you think we should know?
JD: While we don’t have the luxury of having legalized same-sex marriage in Ohio, we stand with the community in support of legislation that would grant all Ohioans this opportunity. By providing an alternative avenue for gay and lesbian singles to meet and develop lifelong commitments, we believe we are helping to advance the cause and empower the community. We are also committed to donating a portion of our profits to Equality Ohio, a statewide LGBT civil rights organization working to achieve equality for all Ohioans.
To learn more about Q-Vault, visit Q-Vault.com.