JEWISH JOURNAL -- May 13 -- As the founding partner of JDate in 1997, Joe Shapira is among the most prolific shadchanim (matchmakers) in Jewish history. More than 21,000 JDate couples reported their marriages to their cyber-yenta in 2008 alone. The site spans England, France and Israel, with Russian and Spanish sites in development. Shapira founded JDate with partner Alon Carmel a few years after divorcing his first wife, with whom he has three kids, but he never used JDate for himself, mostly, he said, “because I have a very outgoing personality, so I never had a problem starting a conversation with someone I liked. But without JDate, he probably wouldn’t have met Nickie who came to his office in search of subjects to interview for a book she was writing at the time, a practical guide for finding and marrying Mr. Right. In 2004, Shapira resigned as CEO of Spark Networks, four years after taking the company public, and now serves as president of Java Equities, a real estate acquisitions and management conglomerate — a job he describes as “less exciting but stable.”
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