TBS Learns To Love

I will stay married to you, so I don’t have to pay up

A new start-up promising to pay for you to get married only requires funds be repaid if you get divorced. A lovely sounding concept, this doesn’t entirely make sense to TBS…

 

Did you know there are around 326 weddings happening per day across Australia? That is a lot of taffeta and tears…and big money. What else is expensive? Divorce. There are around 48,000 divorces per year in Australia, so this whole “love you, let’s get married” thing is still a big money spinner. Not to be cynical or anything, but it makes sense some start-ups want to cash in on the probability of divorce.

A start-up called SwanLuv will loan you $10,000 to pay for your wedding (which will probably just be a down-payment for the average couple, considering that weddings in Australia cost around $36,200). They are asking people to sign up, they will give you the funds, and the one catch is if you get divorced you have to pay it all back with interest. They are obviously banking on this probability of divorce to fund their start-up and secure a steady revenue stream. Who are eligible to sign up for these wedding funds? According to the site, anyone who has found their soul mate! That is like, the lowest criteria ever considering until recently I thought my local barista was my soul mate.

But do they just pay for everyone’s wedding? Well, this is where it gets interesting. The start-up claims to use online data and algorithm software to determine a couple’s risk. Again, sorry to be cynical, but if your whole business model is based on hoping the money loaned for a wedding is eventually repaid in divorce, why wouldn’t you just approve every Britney Spears application? You know you will for sure get a 30-day turnaround #business. The company also claims that they do not profit from the divorces, and that the money is simply there to fund more weddings and that the startup “keeps the dream alive.”

Is this a sustainable start-up though? These guys are getting a lot of PR for their not-yet totally launched start-up, so they are probably VC funded or at the very least FFF funded (Friends, Family, Fools), and if you consider that the average length of time for a marriage is now two years longer than it was in 1993, it will take some time to break even. Consider also that one in three marriages end in divorce, than that means twice as many users of the site will keep the money and one third of the money paid out will be returned to the company to somehow be stretched just enough to fund another double round of weddings. (This is likely where the interest kicks in and makes it all work.)

Look, we all know that marriage is the leading cause of divorce, and now my head hurts.

 

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