Skip to main content

After Long Battle, The Tinder-Match Lawsuit is Over

Match breaks up with Tinder (logos)
Wikipedia

Match Group announced December 1 that it will pay $441 million to the founders of Tinder to settle a dispute over the dating app’s 2017 market valuation. This decision marked an abrupt end to a heated courtroom battle just one day before scheduled closing statements would send the suit to a jury to decide.

Tinder founders and executives accused Match and its parent company, IAC/InterActiveCorp, of intentionally undercutting Tinder’s value to avoid paying out billions in stock options. Plaintiffs claimed Match and IAC gave banks false information about the dating app’s potential, which led to a $3 billion valuation — well below the $13 billion Tinder co-founder Sean Rad and other claimants asserted Tinder to be worth. This low-ball valuation bilked Tinder founders and employees out of billions of dollars in collective equity compensation.

Tinder attorneys asserted that Match executives frequently boasted that Tinder was a “rocket ship” with an incredible growth outlook while, at the same time, issuing “doom and gloom” forecasts to the banks calculating the company’s valuation. In response, Match and IAC jointly responded that this was just “sour grapes” arising from early employees who were bitter that they cashed out too soon.

Money wasn’t the only controversy ratcheting up the tense relationship between the former partners. The trial followed several explosive assertions. Former Tinder plaintiffs leveled allegations of Rad’s forced exit from the company and accusations that billionaire media mogul Barry Diller, an IAC owner, buried 2016 sexual misconduct allegations against Match Group CEO Greg Blatt so that Blatt could continue to manipulate valuation numbers.

Related Guides

IAC may have decided it had had enough when one of the final trial testimonies was a recorded deposition of Jefferies banker Storm Duncan detailing how, when requesting supplemental information in Tinder’s valuation process, Blatt allegedly responded, “With all due respect, you can go fuck yourself.” (A claim Blatt continues to deny.)

According to a Match Group filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the settlement will sew up both Rad’s New York State Supreme Court suit and several other claims in arbitration over 2017’s contested valuation. Match — also the owner of Hinge, OkCupid, and PlentyOfFish — stated that money for the settlement will come out of the company’s cash on hand, which stood at $523 million at the end of the third quarter.

Despite Match Group and Tinder’s radically different views on what failed the relationship, analysts agreed that a settlement was a smart option for both parties.

Morning Brew noted that an analyst from Truist Securities painted the situation as a net positive for Match Group since the “litigation overhang” is “now in the rearview mirror.” Truist estimated that Match spent tens of millions of dollars since the lawsuit’s August 2018 filing.

Match Group shares, which had fallen 13% over the past month, were trending up after this week’s settlement.

Read More: ‘Cowboy Bebop’ Be Gone — Netflix Pulls the Plug After Less Than a Month

Editors' Recommendations

Topics
Matthew Denis
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Matt Denis is an on-the-go remote multimedia reporter, exploring arts, culture, and the existential in the Pacific Northwest…
CBD 101: A doctor tells us how to use CBD for sleep, anxiety, and pain
CBD is great for a variety of use-cases
CBD Hemp oil, Doctor holding a bottle of hemp oil, Medical marijuana products including cannabis leaf, cbd and hash oil, alternative medicine

In recent years, CBD (cannabidiol, for those of you wondering what does CBD stand for) has emerged as a popular natural remedy for a range of health concerns, from sleep disturbances and anxiety to chronic pain. But how do you use CBD effectively to address these issues? 

We spoke with Dr. Chris Adlakha of Elevated Wellness to get expert insights into the world of CBD. In this article, we'll explore what CBD is used for and provide guidance on its usage. 

Read more
What UFC champions Sean O’Malley and Aljamain Sterling eat while cutting weight in fight week
Spoiler alert: There's a lot of protein
Chicken breast and broccoli

Whether you're a fan of mixed martial arts (MMA) or just curious about the behind-the-scenes routines of professional fighters, you might be wondering how UFC champions "Suga" Sean O'Malley and Aljamain "Funkmaster" Sterling get ready for fight week.

One slightly controversial part of their prep is cutting weight up to the fight. Weight cutting is a common practice in most combat sports and refers to dropping weight before a competition to compete in a specific weight class.

Read more
Shohei Ohtani all but gone, MLB franchise LA Angels may also lose Mike Trout: Report
Our GM hopes they both move to Chavez Ravine to play for The Dodgers
Shohei Otani playing baseball

The Los Angeles Angels may be on their way to a major team overhaul. Shohei Ohtani, who is one of the best and most innovative two-way players in the history of baseball, has already made it clear that he wants to leave the team, and now, news has broken suggested that Mike Trout, the team's other major star, could also be on his way out the door. Needless to say, losing both of their major stars could have an enormous impact on what the Angels look like moving forward.
Shohei Ohtani is almost definitely leaving
At the end of this season, during which Ohtani has been riddled with injuries, the phenom will be a free agent, and those closest to the league suggest that he's likely to sign with another team. Everyone from the Los Angeles Dodgers to the New York Mets is expected to pursue him this off-season for understandable reasons, and Ohtani has previously made it clear that he's not necessarily thrilled with the way this season has gone for the Angels, who are set to miss the playoffs completely.

Ohtani has yet to formalize any sort of deal with another team, but the question seems to be more about where he'll end up than whether he'll stay with the Angels. The team did choose to hold onto him past the trade deadline, a move they say they don't regret, so it's still possible that the two sides find some way to come to an agreement. In all likelihood, though, Ohtani's time with the Angels is done, and he'll be in a new uniform when the next season starts.

Read more