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Want an escort on demand? There’s an app for that

There are online marketplaces for anything from private jets to cleaners, so it was only a matter of time before "paid dates," or escorts, came next.

An app called Ohlala launched in Germany earlier this year in a bid to take the Tinder-style concept of meeting people and setting up dates a step further – by letting woman set a price for men to go out with them.

Describing the app in an interview, the founder said it's in between an escort service and a dating app.

"We don't know what is happening on the dates, so I can't confirm that it's an escort service. When the matching is taking place, all of what is happening is agreed upon in the chat," Pia Poppenreiter, chief executive of Ohlala, told CNBC by phone ahead of the Slush technology conference in Helsinki, Finland.

"I think we are in between dating apps and explicit escort sites. It's more private and we are very straightforward and not pitching it on finding the love of your life. We are saying you can have fun for a certain amount of time. People always know what the others are looking for."


'Men are straightforward'

Women are able to sign up to the service, upload a profile, add their preferences and a minimum price. Then a man can search for what he is looking for.

The app then matches two people and a price is agreed. The two people can chat and agree on a date. All the money is exchanged in cash with the possibility of card transactions being introduced later.

Poppenreiter is not new to the app game. Last year, she launched an app called Peppr which connected people to prostitutes. She discontinued the controversial app because the model of on-demand prostitutes did not work out. She said that there weren't enough connections so people waiting a couple of hours would give up using the app.

Ohlala only lets men seek for paid dates with women. She said this was a better move because on Peppr "there was not a single booking from women."

"I just learned from Peppr even if women want to go on paid dates, they have a different agenda, and it's not an impulse booking, they want to solve a problem. They write emails for a while, and then meet men offline. Men however are straightforward," Poppenreiter told CNBC.

10 men to one woman

Ohlala has raised a small amount of early investment funds but the co-founder did not reveal how much because it was confidential. She said she is currently in talks to raise another round which would be "over 1 million dollars."

Currently the service has 13,000 people signed up and Poppenreiter said there are 10 men to one woman, adding that "the dynamic works well."

Ohlala launched in Berlin in August and is available in an additional three German cities. The firm is hoping to expand in the near-term, but that will depend on the city's attitude.

"We are evaluating right now and it will be somewhere with a liberal attitude, we will decide on this in the next two months," Poppenreiter said.