Spark Networks

Spark Networks SE Reports Second Half And Full Year 2017 Financial Results

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Spark Networks SE, the platform behind dating brands including EliteSingles, Jdate, Christian Mingle, and Silversingles, has released its second half and full year 2017 financial results.

The report comes nearly six months after Affinitas and Spark Networks Inc. merged to form Spark Networks SE. The companies’ combined portfolios position Spark Networks SE as a leader in the serious segment of the dating market with a global network of nearly half a million monthly paying subscribers across 29 countries.

"With the close of the merger between Affinitas GmbH ("Affinitas") and Spark Networks, Inc. ("Spark") in November 2017, we have created a pure-play leader in the dating industry with increased scale and a portfolio of well-known brands," said Jeronimo Folgueira, Chief Executive Officer of Spark Networks SE, in a statement. "We have only just begun to realize the benefits of the merger, as the results we reported today include just two months of Spark's performance.”

Facebook Is Finally Getting Into The Online Dating Game

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Finding love on Facebook? It’s complicated.

At least, it used to be. At this year’s F8 developer conference, Mark Zuckerberg took the stage for an announcement many would call long overdue: Facebook is launching a dating feature.

“We’re building a feature for dating and relationships within the Facebook app. People already use Facebook to meet new people, and we want to make that experience better,” the company said in an announcement. “People will be able to create a dating profile that is separate from their Facebook profile — and potential matches will be recommended based on dating preferences, things in common, and mutual friends.”

The social networking platform is rife with matchmaking potential. According to Zuckerberg, one in three marriages in the U.S. begins online and 200 million Facebook users list themselves as singles. Facebook’s dating feature “is going to be built around long-term relationships, not hook-ups," he insisted, taking subtle aim at competitors like Tinder.

Spark Networks And EliteSingles To Merge In Late 2017

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Spark Networks and Affinitas GmbH have entered into a definitive agreement to combine in a stock-for-stock merger. The merger will bring together leading global brands like JDate, ChristianMingle, EliteSingles, and eDarling to cater to a broad spectrum of users with a presence in 26 countries, creating a more diverse and balanced footprint.

With nearly 500,000 period-ending subscribers and over $115 million in revenue for the twelve months ended March 31, 2017, the combined company would be one of the world's largest online dating providers on a pro forma basis.

The transaction has been approved by Spark's Board of Directors and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2017. The combined company will be named Spark Networks SE and will be headquartered in Berlin, Germany, while maintaining a significant U.S. presence with offices in New York City and Lehi, Utah.

Spark Networks Reports Second Quarter 2015 Financial Results

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Spark Networks, owner of a handful of niche dating sites like ChristianMingle.com, JDate.com, and BlackSingles.com, has released financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2015.

The company has good news to report, primarily centered around attempts to turnaround business after growth stalled for ChristainMingle and JDate. Highlights include:

  • Significant, double-digit improvement in win-back rates with key cohorts
  • Double-digit improvement on ChristianMingle TV spend efficiency
  • New communication platform driving increased user engagement
  • Subscriber base stabilized on both JDate and ChristianMingle in July versus June
  • Reiterating commitment to subscriber growth in Q4

Chief Executive Officer Michael Egan stated, "We are pleased to have made considerable progress toward transforming our business during the second quarter, and remain on track to return to sequential subscriber growth across both JDate and ChristianMingle by Q4.”

The expense reduction and improved efficiency program Spark Networks announced in 2014 is showing signs of success so far. Excluding direct marketing expenses, cost and expenses in the second quarter of 2015 were $7.1 million, a decrease of 20% compared to the year ago period. Direct marketing expenses in the second quarter of 2015 were $5.3 million, a decrease of 33% compared to the year ago period and a 12% decrease compared to the prior quarter.

On the downside, revenue in the second quarter of 2015 was $12.3 million, a decrease of 22% compared to the year ago period, and a 9% decrease from the prior quarter. The decreases were primarily driven by a loss in paying subscribers, particularly for the Christian and Jewish Networks segments.

Spark Networks plans to continue its “crawl, walk, run” strategy for the remainder of 2015. A re-design and re-architecture of the company's core websites is in the works. An updated JDate experience is expected in early Q4, followed by an updated ChristianMingle experience in the latter part of that quarter.

Other product improvements are in the works concurrently. An upgraded communication platform has dramatically increased users' interactions, and improved mobile offerings have also seen a positive response.

In addition to improving the product, Spark Networks is working hard to improve its marketing strategy. Changes have been made to the customer acquisition and retention programs with good results. The company has seen in excess of 10% efficiency gains with their ChristianMingle television marketing spend, and July 2015 generated more initial registrations on JDate than any month since the first quarter of 2014.

"It is important to note that this is just the start,” stated Michael Egan. “As we roll out new and refreshed products, and continue to enhance our operational capabilities, we expect to drive continued improvements in customer growth and retention.”

For more on Spark Networks 2 most popular dating services you can read our Christian Mingle review and our JDate review.

Spark Networks Reports Second Quarter Financial Results

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It’s been a busy month for Spark Networks. The owner of ChristianMingle, JDate, BlackSingles. and more, has released its financial results for the second quarter of 2014, and will soon be getting a new CEO.

Revenue in Q2 2014 was $15.8 million, a decrease of 10% from the previous year’s $17.6 million. A 9% decrease in average paying subscribers – reflecting an 8% and 7% decline in average paying subscribers for the Christian and Jewish Networks segments, respectively – is the primary reason for the overall drop in revenue.

On the plus side, expenses were down. Direct marketing expenses in the second quarter of 2014 were $7.9 million, a decrease of 43% from Q2 2013. Total cost and expenses dropped 19% from the previous year, to $16.8 million this year. Net loss in the second quarter of 2014 was $1.1 million, or $0.05 per share, compared to a net loss of $3.3 million, or $0.15 per share, in the year-ago period. Adjusted EBITDA in the second quarter of 2014 was a loss of $363,000, an improvement of 84% compared to the year-ago period.

Much of the good news comes from Christian Networks, which accounted for most of the decreased expenses thanks to improved marketing efficiency and growth in the winback and renewal subscriber bases. Christian Networks was also responsible for bumping contribution up in the second quarter of 2014 to $7.8 million, an increase of 109% from the year before. This is the first time Christian Networks has generated positive contribution in 15 quarters.

All this comes at a time of major change for Spark Networks. President & CEO Greg Liberman has left the company, leaving Michael McConnell – the company’s Chairman of the Board – to serve as Executive Chairman until Liberman’s successor is in place.

“It has been an incredible ten years, and I am honored to have spent more than half of my professional career at such a special company,” said Liberman. “Spark is a relationship business in every sense of the word. Through iconic brands like JDate and ChristianMingle, we create countless relationships for our members every day. But, behind the scenes, it’s the relationships we have in the communities we serve and the relationships within our team that drive everything.

Suffice it to say, I am extremely proud and grateful to have played a role in building and leading such an amazing team, and to have had the opportunity to work hand-in-hand with them to transform this company and business. In their hands, Spark’s future is very bright.”

For more on these two dating sites you can read our reviews of ChristianMingle.com and JDate.com.

Spark Networks First Quarter 2012 Financials

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Spark Networks just released their first quarter financial results for 2012. Their revenue of $14.6 million for the quarter is up 25 percent when compared to last year. Unfortunately they still had a net loss which was $1.7 million (due to marketing costs). Jewish Networks posted $6.6 million in revenue with for the first time the Christian Networks beating them by having almost $6.9 million in revenue.

The average paying subscriber as a whole was up 36 percent when compared to Q1 in 2010. Spark Networks in quarter 1, 2011 had 240,706 subscribers. Jewish Networks was down 6 percent with 86,433 subscribers and Christian Networks was up 163 percent with 124,158 subscribers. The Other Networks saw subscribers decline by 23 percent to 30,115.

For the full 2012 Q1 release visit the Spark Networks News Room.

Related Story: Spark Networks Fourth Quarter 2011 Financials