Prime’s Mission to Solve Male Midlife Crisis
What is Prime? It’s a club for men in the prime of their life — to get active, be social, and make stuff. We spoke with Founder Dominic Taylor to learn more.
How did Prime come about?
On the first week of the Zinc programme on a visit to Rochdale, Greater Manchester, we witnessed first-hand the effects of automation and globalisation of work. Traditional industries have gone, vast swathes of workers have lost their purpose and shockingly the average male life expectancy in these areas is just 66 years old. 1 in 3 suicides in the UK are men aged 40–59 and inactivity and unhealthy sedentary lifestyles are more pronounced in this group in areas of deprivation.
Who is Prime for and what’s the market?
We’re looking to target men in their forties and fifties. We believe this is a good touch point to intervene and encourage positive active behaviours and build social bonds prior to retirement. There are 8.5 million men in the UK in this demographic with 10x this number in developed countries. 50% say they want a challenge but don’t know where to start.
Our user testing has shown strong demand and willingness to pay. There is huge revenue potential in the UK alone of £100m per annum with projections of 1 in 20 midlife men in the UK becoming members at £10 per month, matched by partner commission and advertising income.
What makes Prime different?
Prime is specifically designed for and exclusively available to midlife men. It’s a national movement of regular social meetups and a menu of fun local taster activities based on 3 themes:
- Get Active — country hikes and bike rides, parkrun prep, vets football
- Be Social — local history walks, talks, curry clubs and volunteering
- Make stuff — workshops, crafts, healthy nutrition and cooking
These are all supported by a smart digital platform that nudges and rewards.
What does success look like for Prime, what’s the north star?
Our mission is to inspire and enable ALL midlife men to be more socially active. We truly believe this will benefit all in society, improve happiness, mental health, physical health in later life as well as build stronger family relationships and communities.
What has been the biggest challenge so far?
Men in midlife struggle more with identity and purpose outside of their job and are less likely to seek help or have developed social relationships to the degree women often do. They are at the bottom of the “Happiness Curve” and are less satisfied with their social life than any other group. Loneliness and isolation can lead to long-term mental and physical health issues.
However, it’s difficult for middle aged men to initially get engaged as they are under represented within community groups (older retired people and women participants) or sports and leisure activities (younger, fitter participants).
What’s next for Prime?
Our team is experienced in building and scaling large scale membership organisations. Craig was Chief Executive of The Challenge (National Citizen Service) and MD/COO of Raspberry Pi Foundation with the largest coders club in the world. I have been MD, Commercial Director of digital startups in health and local events.
We are currently running pilots of Prime in South London and will replicate and scale these networks across the country and globally. We are raising initial funding from angel investors and seeking experienced board members to join us in our ambitious project.
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Transforming people’s financial resilience and turning uncertainty into opportunity
Many people have been suffering a cost of living crisis for decades. This year, that crisis has spread to most of the population, causing a major shock across the developed world.
Whilst the immediate issues of rising energy costs and the COVID pandemic have tipped a lot of people over the edge, the underlying economic insecurities have been building for a long time.
Even before the energy and COVID crises, 100m people in Europe and 90m in the US were financially fragile. They wouldn’t be able to pay an unexpected bill today of $400, access $2000 within 30 days if they need it, or pay for food and basics if they’re out of work for 8 weeks.
In this mission, we want to empower middle-aged people to turn uncertainty into opportunity, to seize technology and make it work for them, to reinvent their lives (not be reinvented by others) and to achieve the financial security they need to navigate their own way through a changing and uncertain world.
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Urgent action is needed in this decade to help businesses address these changes and their impacts, and adapt to the changes that are inevitable. In light of the threat that the climate and biodiversity crises pose to human wellbeing and planetary health, there is consensus about the need for urgent transformation. In particular transformation is needed in impactful industries, which are not fit to meet the current and future needs of people and our changing planet.