July 6, 2021 – Hinge didn’t help McLeod find his soulmate — he ultimately married the college girlfriend he was heartbroken over after they reconnected. But the app is now reportedly used by millions. (Hinge declined to reveal its number of daily or monthly active users.)

In its growth, Hinge caught the eye of Match Group, which owns some of the biggest dating apps including Tinder. In 2019, Match Group announced that it fully acquired Hinge for an undisclosed amount.

“I think a lot of times, success is born out of just a tremendous amount of failure,” McLeod says. “I’ve experienced that in my personal life, and I was able to bring that to Hinge.”

Here, McLeod shares his experience overcoming addiction and failure, how that shaped his leadership and more. 

I stopped drinking at the very end of college because I had pretty significant drug and alcohol addiction problems. So I quit the day that I graduated college.

I was not good at staying sober in the beginning. I went to a lot of 12-step programs and meetings and all that stuff, and I was always kind of in and out.

When I really got scared and really started to get serious about it, I learned the practice of discipline, of doing things that you don’t feel like doing. It taught me so much about basic human skills. I was not very disciplined person. I was not a very goal-oriented person. I think it just really taught me how to see what went wrong last time and what can I do differently this time.


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