The OPW/iDate Weekly News Summary.
- Online Dating and Dating Industry Conference in Odessa on May 21-22, 2021
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U.S. Approves Sale of Grindr
WALL STREET JOURNAL - May 30 - U.S. national security officials have approved an investor group's purchase of gay-dating app Grindr that is being sold by a Chinese company after the Trump administration raised concerns about the potential theft of Americans' personal data. China's Beijing Kunlun Tech said that the buyer - San Vicente Acquisition - has secured approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. Grindr could be sold for $608.5M. In 2016, Kunlun paid $93M for a 60% stake in Grindr. It acquired the rest of Grindr for $152M in 2018.
Meetic Is Launching Video Calling
TUEXPERTOAPPS - June 4 - French dating app Meetic is launching new video calling feature. To activate video calls, users have to first exchange at least four messages.
ProSiebenSat.1's Shareholders Might Partner to Acquire the Company
SEEKING ALPHA - May 30 - KKR & Co has built a 5.21% stake in ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE which makes it the third largest shareholder. Mediaset SpA has increased its stake to 24.2% while Czech Media Invest owns 10%. While KKR claims that the investment is of purely financial nature, it might be the first sign of an upcoming acquisition and privatization of ProSiebenSat.1. In order to do that, KKR could partner with one (or both) of the company's biggest shareholders. ProSiebenSat.1 intends to refocus on the entertainment business. However, the group's second pillar - NuCom - does not really fit into that picture. Therefore, it might indeed make sense to separate the two businesses. NuCom might be spun off or sold. General Atlantic owns 28.4% of NuCom. NuCom was valued with an enterprise value of €1.8B in early 2018. If sold today, it is surely worth considerably more, as it has been growing steadily and maintained profitability. The company is growing both organically and through acquisitions. ProSiebenSat.1 and General Atlantic have reached an agreement to purchase The Meet Group for ~$500M. Meet will be integrated into NuCom's online dating business.
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Winning Bidder for Grindr Has Ties to Chinese Owner
REUTERS - June 3 - An investor group San Vincente that got U.S. approval to buy Grindr has financial and personal links to the dating app's current owner, China's Beijing Kunlun Tech Co Ltd. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) had cleared the sale of Grindr to San Vicente Acquisition for ~$600M. Grindr spokeswoman said: "The buyers for Grindr were selected after an extensive and unbiased bidding process that complied fully with all applicable regulations, as the receipt of all necessary approvals - including CFIUS - demonstrates." A regulatory filing shows San Vicente was incorporated on Feb. 19, just weeks before the deal with Kunlun. The company is named after the LA street where Grindr has its headquarters.
BharatMatrimony Launches Home Wedding Platform
PRAGATIVADI - June 3 - BharatMatrimony is launching a platform "HomeWeddings", on Matrimony Bazaar, to provide the entire range of COVID-Safe wedding services from catering to makeup including purohits at the doorstep, to help couples happily tie the knot. This service is open to the public, not just BharatMatrimony members. Launched in 2016, Matrimony Bazaar is India's largest wedding planning marketplace that provides wedding services, ranging from catering to clothing. The platform has ~22K verified wedding service providers across 37 cities including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Chennai, Cochin and Bengaluru.
Fed. Circ. OKs Tinder Win in British Telecom Patent Suit
LAW360 - June 5 - The Federal Circuit has backed a lower court's ruling letting Tinder's parent IAC out of a suit claiming it had infringed a British Telecommunications patent, agreeing with the earlier decision that the technology was too abstract for patent protection.
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What Happened to Hater Dating App?
DISTRACTIFY - May 30 - Dating app Hater was matching people based on dislikes. The app was started by a former Goldman Sachs employee who quit his job to pursue comedy. The Hater app started, literally, as a joke. To launch the app, Brendan took his idea to Shark Tank. Mark Cuban gave him $200K as a starting investment, though instead Brendan ended up raising $1M in VC funding. In 2017, the app was downloaded ~1M times. While the Hater app website is still active, the app appears to have been removed from the app store, and the company's Twitter hasn't been active since 2018. There is no official statement from the company about their closure, but it appears to have been shut down. During Brendan's interview with CNBC, he admitted that the app wasn't making any money at the time, so they were planning on implementing advertising and premium subscriptions, though it appears that never panned out.
Queer Dating Apps Partner for NiceAF Campaign
PRESS RELEASE - June 3 - In the first ever cross-site collaboration of this kind, Building Healthy Online Communities (BHOC) and dating apps for gay and bisexual men (Adam4Adam, Daddyhunt, Grindr, POZ Personals, SCRUFF and Jack'd) have teamed up to make their online communities kinder for everyone with the NiceAF.org campaign. The team behind NiceAF.org has compiled a number of videos featuring men telling stories of how they keep the online experience NiceAF. Starting June 3rd, the collaborating apps will invite their users to vote for the video that does the best job of embodying NiceAF's mission of promoting nicer, kinder interactions between users.
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