Congratulations to Chicago entrepreneur Sam Yagan, who today was named "One Of The Most Influential People In The World by TIME Magazine. He is on the Advisory Board of Built In Chicago, a co-founder of Excelerate Labs and a graduate of the IMSA (Illinois Math & Science Academy). He is a true Chicago success story, an incredible entrpereneur and am personally so lucky to call him a mentor.
Sam Yagan, Matchmaker, 36
What do you get when you combine big data, the quest for love and complete irreverence? The hippest spot on the Web: OkCupid. Co‑founded by serial entrepreneur Sam Yagan — who’s now CEO of the world’s largest e-dating site, Match.com — OkCupid took the online dating world by storm, pairing people on the basis of their answers to a mind-boggling variety of questions. Crunching these data, the wonks at OkCupid come to many unexpected conclusions: One of the best predictors of the long-term success of a relationship is whether the partners share an attraction or revulsion to horror movies. If sex, not love, is what you are after, a man’s best chance of achieving that goal on a first date is with a woman who says she “likes the taste of beer.” At a time when businesses talk a lot about big data but often struggle to put it to use, Yagan’s approach stands out. In his own words, “You give us data. We give you dates.”