Malta, January 19, 6am Pacific Time — Dating Group, one of the largest companies in the dating industry with 73 million registered users across its portfolio, today announced the acquisition of Once, the leading app for quality dating in Western Europe. The deal values the company at up to $18 million and is made via a combination of cash and Dating Group stock.
Once leverages AI algorithms to provide just one match per day to each user. Each pair has 24 hours of each other’s attention and can continue chatting if they “like” each other. The AI looks at the account’s info, dating preferences and previous history in order to find the best possible match. Users can also rate each particular profile to let the AI better understand their taste.
Once championed the “slow” dating model focusing on quality matches over competing for the user’s attention. It is a leading app in the dating category in its core countries in Western Europe and has built a profitable business with over 10 million users. Now it becomes a part of Dating Group, one of the largest global holdings in the dating and social discovery markets. Clémentine Lalande, Co-founder and CEO of Once, will continue leading the company. Having experienced swipe-based dating apps herself she wanted to build a refreshing alternative enabling quality dating.
“I am thrilled to join the Dating Group today, both because of their proven focus on post-swiping dating alternatives, and to leverage the huge synergies between Once and Dating Group”, Clémentine Lalande, Once CEO, says. “In such a concentrated and competitive market having a large partner will allow us to augment our reach and accelerate geographical expansion”.
The emotional impact of the pandemic and the lockdown encouraged people to take dating more seriously and Once’s solution has a perfect timing. By providing meaningful connections based on a thorough analysis it frees people from countless swipes and endless hours spent on their phones.
“We strongly believe in the concept of AI and making quality matches. We see a huge potential in integrating Once into our portfolio”, says Bill Alena, Chief Investment Officer at Dating Group. “We’re excited to have Clémentine join Dating Group, she and her team have built a fascinating product and with this acquisition Dating Group expands deeper into the Western European market.”
ABOUT DATING GROUP
Dating Group is a global social discovery platform, enabling people from around the globe to connect through the power of shared interests and mutual benefits. Dating Group has offices in seven countries and a team of more than 500 professionals with more than 73 million registered users across the entire portfolio. Its brands include Dating.com, DateMyAge, Dil Mil, Cherish, Tubit, AnastasiaDate, ChinaLove, and many more, each with a unique platform tailored to different communities defined by interest, geography and demographics.
Launched in October 2015, Once is a slow dating app that focuses on quality over quantity by picking the perfect matches for its users every day at noon. The app provides meaningful connections based on a thorough analysis and frees people from countless swipes and the need to spend hours in the app. Once gathers up more than 10M users and creates 50M of couples and friendly relationships every month. For more information please visit https://getonce.com/en
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