PlentyOfFish sold to American dating site giant Match for US$575 million

Vancouver’s PlentyOfFish has been purchased by The Match Group, which operates OkCupid, Tinder, Match and Meetic 

PlentyOfFish

Vancouver’s PlentyOfFish (POF) has been purchased by The Match Group, which operates OkCupid, Tinder, Match and Meetic, in a US$575 million cash deal.

POF, which employs 75 people, has grown steadily since it was founded in 2003 by CEO Marcus Frind, and in March it announced it had reached 100 million users and $100 million in annual revenue.

“For over a decade I have followed the consistent growth of PlentyOfFish, first within North America, then globally, and most recently across platforms, as one of the most popular mobile dating products in the world,” said Match Group CEO Sam Yagan.

“As more people than ever use more dating apps than ever with more frequency than ever, PlentyOfFish’s addition both brings new members into our family of products and deepens the lifetime relationship we have with our users across our portfolio.”

Both POF and The Match Group earn money through a combination of subscriptions and advertising. The Match Group is a subsidiary of IAC (NASDAQ:IACI) and has over 50 brands in 200 countries around the world. The company said it adds more than seven million users to its services every month.

POF founder and CEO Markus Frind is the only shareholder of the online dating service, which will put all profit generated from the sale directly into his own bank account.

POF got into some hot water earlier this year when it was fined $48,000 after the company allegedly violated Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) by sending users commercial emails that did not have a clear “unsubscribe” option.

Only two other businesses have been fined under CASL. POF’s fine was the lowest, with Porter Airlines agreeing to pay $150,000 and Compu-Finder being fined $1.1 million.

The sale is set to close in 2015’s fourth quarter and is subject to approval from the Canadian Ministry of Industry.

ecrawford@biv.com

@EmmaHampelBIV