Tinder, Match and OkCupid to launch IPO

Match.com
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IAC is no doubt a leader in the dating market, with such prominent online dating brands as Match.com, Tinder, and OkCupid, which make up a company subsidiary called The Match Group.

The Match Group has announced its plans to launch its first IPO, making the company available for investment dollars from the general public. Match.com has long been a cash cow in the online dating industry with its paid subscription service, and Tinder with its new premium paid service has been reported to be worth about $1 billion by the end of the year. In fact, the combined revenues of all the companies in The Match Group accounted for nearly one third of IAC's overall revenue in the most recent quarter. They're also growing rapidly, surging 13% year-over-year in the most recent quarter to about $239 million.

Greg Blatt, Chairman of The Match Group said in a statement: "The Match Group is poised for substantial growth in the coming years. The dating industry has come a long way since its inception, but the category remains underpenetrated.  We believe the combination of our more established businesses such as Match, Meetic, and OurTime, and earlier stage businesses such as Tinder and OkCupid, creates an attractive combination of significant cash flow generation, strong margins and meaningful growth potential.” 

This comes at a good time, as Zoosk recently pulled its plans to launch an IPO, leaving the dating space wide open for potential investors. Ashley Madison, a dating site for infidelity, was quick to throw its hat in the ring, too. They are planning a second attempt at an IPO for later this year after a forfeited attempt in 2011.

The Match Group joins other prominent and publicly traded online dating services, notably Spark Networks, which owns several niche dating sites such as JDate, Christian Mingle, and BlackSingles.com, as well as Jiayuan.com, the largest online dating site in China.

After the IPO, investors will be able to buy stock in the company, although the ticker symbol is not yet known. Notably, IAC made the decision to split The Match Group from its parent company to do the IPO.

Barry Diller, IAC’s Chairman and Senior Executive said in a statement: "As many know from our actions over the last 20 years, I'm not a believer in simply agglomerating assets in perpetuity.  I've long felt that as entities grow into size and maturity it's healthy to give them separation and independence from a mother church.”