Contributed by: kellyseal Thursday, December 12 2019 @ 09:38 am
Spark Networks announced that Eric Eichmann will take over as CEO of Spark Networks, replacing Jeronimo Folgueira.
“I could not be more excited to join Spark at this time,” Eichmann said in a statement, published in Yahoo! Finance News[*1] . “Spark has a tremendous brand portfolio to help people find love across the globe…I look forward to working with the great team at Spark and leading the next chapter of its development.”
Eichmann brings twenty years of consumer and ad technology experience to Spark, most recently serving as CEO of Criteo, which grew its revenues from $320 million to $2.3 billion, beating market expectations for 19 quarters in a row. Prior to this, Eichmann served as COO at Living Social and Rosetta Stone, and SVP of ad operations and technology at AOL. He holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University.
Spark Networks faces big competition as well as opportunity in the growing dating app market. A recent industry report by market research firm ReportLinker found that the global dating apps market is expected to surpass $8.4 billion by 2024. Considering the tremendous continued growth of the online dating industry, especially as companies focus on developing markets in South Asia, it’s a pivotal time for Spark to position itself to increase its global market share.
The company has already made big moves to secure its place in the industry, including the acquisition of popular dating app Zoosk earlier this year, making Spark Networks the second largest online dating platform in North America.
Spark Networks is competing with the other big players in the industry – Match Group and Facebook Dating. After launching in the U.S. in September, Facebook Dating has so far not captured a significant share of the online dating market, and in fact, apps like Tinder and Bumble have continued to grow subscribers and revenue.
Spark Networks has an array of popular niche dating apps under its belt in addition to Zoosk, including EliteSingles, Jdate, Christian Mingle, eDarling, JSwipe and Silversingles. Spark also has over one million monthly paying subscribers globally.
“The board and I are thrilled to have Eric join Spark Networks and lead the company through its next phase,” said David Khalil, chairman of Spark’s board of directors. “Eric brings a strong track record delivering operational excellence in complex, global, and publicly traded businesses. His experience leading engineering teams, and his domain expertise across advertising and technology-driven businesses make Eric an exceptional candidate to lead Spark.”
Folgueira will stay on through December for the transition, after which he will continue to serve on the company’s board of directors.