Match Group Stock Up 17% Thanks to Tinder

Match Group
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Match Group stock rose considerably after its second quarter earnings report was better than expected, thanks in large part to its star dating app Tinder.

According to Reuters, Match Group revenue for the three months ended June 30 was revealed in a recent earnings call with investors. It rose about 18% to $498 million, about $10 million higher than forecast. The company grew its average subscriber base 40.5% to 5.2 million in the same quarter, more than expected, thanks to its new features and the launch of Tinder Lite. Match now expects to add over 1.6 million average subscribers in 2019, much higher than the 1 million the company had forecast earlier. With all this good news, Match Group stock rose 17 percent.

Tinder Lite provides a version of the app that uses less storage and provides faster service, thanks to a scaled-down version of the famous swiping technology. It launched for Android phones in certain countries in both Southeast Asia and South America, where most people use less expensive Android phones and Internet speed is slower.

Two new features also debuted during the second quarter: Read Receipts, which allows a person to see if a match they made has read their messages, and Super Boost which gives a person more visibility.

Match Group also now allows people to bypass the Google Play store and enter payment details directly into Match Group apps, which means customers no longer have to pay the Google Play fees, another selling point.

All of this contributed to a better-than-expected revenue number and as a result, stock prices jumped. But it’s not all rosy for Match Group – the company is still facing some legal troubles from former Tinder employees, according to NBC News.

Former VP of Marketing and Communications Rosette Pambakian filed a new lawsuit against Match Group in August, claiming that the company didn’t properly investigate her claims and “tried to buy her silence” regarding her former boss and CEO Gregory Blatt. In the lawsuit, she alleges that Blatt sexually assaulted her at a work party in front of her co-workers. She also said that he had a reputation at the company as a “notorious bully.” When she reported Blatt to Match Group, she said the company offered her a higher salary and stock options in exchange for signing an NDA. Match Group denies the allegations.

Pambakian’s sexual assault lawsuit is separate from the lawsuit filed against the company last year by a group of former Tinder employees including Pambakian and co-founder Sean Rad. The group lawsuit accuses Match Group and IAC of purposely undervaluing Tinder in an effort to avoid paying out billions of dollars in stock options to the employees. Match Group tried to get the charges dismissed, but a June ruling is allowing the case to move forward.