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Chinese gay hook-up app secures millions in funding

A Chinese 'hook-up' app for homosexual men secured £19 million in funding from venture capital firm DCM on Tuesday.

The application called Blued was created in 2012 by the social media site DanLan, and it claims to have 15 million active users.

In September, Blued said it had 15 million active users, 300,000 being outside of China. At that time, 20 per cent of users logged in every day.

Blued users seem to be based in three cities: Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou, Tech in Asia reports.

"In 16 months, Blued has completed three rounds of financing and our valuation far exceeds that of some heterosexual social products," said Blued CEO Geng Le.

DCM co-founder David Chao said: "Worldwide, gay social apps have shown strong demand and broad development space.

"As China's first domestic first gay dating app, future internationalization mean a broader space for development. DCM, as a global investment organization, can bring Blued international resources and help. Blued team's in-depth understanding of gay users was an important reason that attracted DCM."

Geng says that he will use the DCM funds to improve the application, and boost the company. He says that creating a "world-class gay app" was his goal from the very beginning.

"We also want to let the world see the achievements of China's internet, as well as Chinese society's tolerance and progress."

With a population of over 1.35 billion people, China is the most populous country in the world. Homosexuality was illegal in China until 1997, and up until 2001 was defined as a mental disorder.