MindGeek

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MindGeek
Privately held
Industry Adult industry
Information Technology
Predecessor Mansef, Manwin
Founded 2004 (2004)[1][2]
Headquarters Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
Area served
Worldwide
Products Pornographic films
Services
Number of employees
1000+[3]
Website mindgeek.com

MindGeek is a global IT company active in content delivery, streaming media and online advertising,[4] the company is a privately held conglomerate which is headquartered in Luxembourg City with offices in Dublin, Hamburg, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Montreal and Nicosia.[3] Its operations are primarily related to Internet pornography, but also include other online properties such as the comedy video website videobash.com and celebrity gossip site celebs.com.[5]

History[edit]

MindGeek was previously known as Manwin until the company name was changed in October 2013,[6] shortly after Fabian Thylmann, the German born managing partner of the company[7] who had bought Mansef in 2010 to build Manwin,[8] sold his stake to the senior management of the company, which was also completed in October 2013.[9]

Fabian Thylmann

In the late 1990s Thylmann created NATS (Next-Generation Affiliate Tracking Software), which was used for marketing pornography across different websites.[10] In 2006, Thylmann sold his shares in the company that controlled NATS and used the proceeds to purchase the Privat Amateure website.[11]

Between 2006 and 2010, Thylmann bought three more web sites; MyDirtyHobby, Webcams and Xtube.[5] The domain name manwin.com was first registered in August 2007.[12]

Mansef

In 2003, prior to the formation of Mansef, Ouissam Youssef and Stephane Manos (who knew each other from Concordia University in Canada), Matt Keezer (who Youssef and Manos had met on the competitive Foosball circuit), Youssef's brother, and another friend they knew from Concordia, started out by creating TGP websites. They went on to start the Jugg Cash affiliate network and the Brazzers website, and subsequently started many other pay sites including Mofos, and grew rapidly.[13] Mansef Productions Inc. was originally incorporated in Canada in 2004,[14] Mansef was the holding company for Brazzers.[15]

Matt Keezer started PornHub at the beginning of 2007 within a company that Brazzers were partners in called Interhub.[13]

The Brazzers group added Tube8 and ExtremeTube to the properties they owned near the end of 2007.[16]

Acquisition of Mansef and Webcams

In March 2010, Fabian Thylmann bought the assets of Mansef and Interhub and changed the name of the comapny to Manwin.[5] Thylmann also bought WebCams.com in a separate deal during the same period.[17]

Timeline of Acquisitions, Growth and Partnerships[edit]

The following timeline is not an exhaustive record, but it highlights some of the most significant acquisitions, growth and partnerships in the expansion of Manwin / MindGeek.

June 2010
Manwin opened Videobash.com.[5]
September 2010
Manwin acquired EuroRevenue, which owned various niche pornography sites.[18]
November 2010
Manwin introduced Celebs.com.[5]
December 2010
Manwin entered into a partnership with Wicked Pictures to manage Wicked Pictures' paysites.[19]
May 2011
Manwin acquired the popular pornographic video sharing website YouPorn.[20]
June 2011
Manwin bought all adult related assets of Carsed Marketing Incorporated, including Twistys, Twistys Cash Affiliate Program, GayTube, SexTube and TrannyTube.[21]
June 2011
Manwin created 3DXSTAR in a partnership with Funky Monkey Productions.[22]
November 2011
Manwin became an operating partner of Playboy, managing the brand's online and entertainment business Playboy Plus Entertainment, which operates a number of television channels and online services based in the UK and Benelux.[23]
January 2012
Manwin signed a deal to acquire the assets of the American pornographic movie studio Digital Playground.[24]
April 2012
Manwin and Miami-based RK Netmedia Inc. filed a merger notification jointly authorized by Manwin and Reality Kings with the Austrian Federal Competition Authority.[25] In September 2012, Manwin completed the acquisition.[26] Company documents show that following the deal in the autumn, RK Holdings gave a Dublin company, Manwin Content RK, the right to use thousands of its pornography movies.[27]
June 2012
Manwin Launched Babes.com for its "glamcore" network.[28]
July 2013
Manwin filed a merger notification with the Austrian Competition Authority to acquire RedTube.com.[29] During the summer of 2013, Manwin / Mindgeek acquired all of RedTube properties from Hong Kong-based Bright Imperial Ltd. for an undisclosed sum.[30] The domain name RedTube8.xxx was also transferred to MindGeek in December 2013 in a trademark dispute.[30]
December 2014
MindGeek announced they had signed a deal to manage the online assets of Really Useful Ltd., some of which include the websites BDSM.xxx, Casting.xxx, Czech.xxx, DaneJones.com, FakeAgent.com, FakeTaxi.com, Lesbea.com, MassageRooms.com, Mature.xxx, Mom.xxx, Orgasms.xxx, PublicAgent.com, PublicSex.xxx, Teen.xxx, and Tubes.xxx.[31]

Adult industry[edit]

In 2013, the adult industry news website XBIZ described MindGeek as "the largest adult entertainment operator globally",[9][32] and a spokesperson from Manwin, who spoke to the Irish Independent newspaper in 2013 stated that they are "one of the top five bandwidth consumption companies in the world".[33] The Internet pornography review site TheBestPorn.com lists 164 pornographic membership sites that are owned or represented by MindGeek.[34]

Pornhub NETWORK[edit]

The "Pornhub NETWORK" is a network of web 2.0 websites accessible through Mindgeek's PornMD search engine.[35] Mindgeek either own or operate all of the websites in the Pornhub NETWORK, which include ExtremeTube,[36] GayTube,[21] KeezMovies,[37] Peeperz,[37] PornIQ (launched by Pornhub),[38] PornMD,[39] Pornhub,[36] RedTube,[36] SpankWire,[36] Tube8,[36] XTube,[40] and YouPorn.[36]

The three highest ranking sites in the Pornhub NETWORK are Pornhub, RedTube and YouPorn. In November 2013 it was reported that Pornhub has over 1 billion visitors per month,[41] and a December 2014 article in Adweek states that Pornhub has 50 million daily visitors.[42] Pornhub.com scores at Alexa Global Rank 72 (as of 19 December 2014).[43]

According to TrafficEstimate.com, Redtube.com generates over 90 million visits per month,[44] and YouPorn.com generates almost 80 million visits per month[45] (based on the data for 30 days up to mid November 2014. Data for Pornhub.com was not available from TrafficEstimate). YouPorn claim that their partner program has 400 content providers who participate.[46]

Pornographic Movie Studios[edit]

MindGeek own the pornographic movie studios Babes.com,[28] Brazzers, Digital Playground, Reality Kings, Twistys,[47] and Men.com.[48][49] Mindgeek also manage the websites of Wicked Pictures, and Really Useful Ltd., and they oversee Playboy's online and television operations,[7] and they established 3DXSTAR in partnership with Funky Monkey Productions.[22]

Amateur Pornography[edit]

Mindgeek own the amateur pornographic video sharing websites Mofos,[39] MyDirtyHobby,[39] Sextube,[21] and Webcams.[39]

Pornography for Mobile Devices[edit]

MindGeek is one of the leaders in mobile-phone pornography in North America, handling millions of visits each day,[50][51] they were awarded the "Future Mobile Award for Mobile Adult Services" by Juniper Research in 2012.[52][53][54]

Criticism[edit]

It has been reported that MindGeek's dominance in online pornography may have negative results because of the monopolistic powers they have from owning both production and distribution avenues.[55]

Global Alexa Ranks[edit]

Domain Alexa rank (20 Dec 2014)[56] Category
pornhub.com 72 Pornhub NETWORK
redtube.com 103 Pornhub NETWORK
youporn.com 124 Pornhub NETWORK
tube8.com 261 Pornhub NETWORK
spankwire.com 912 Pornhub NETWORK
keezmovies.com 1144 Pornhub NETWORK
xtube.com 1148 Pornhub NETWORK
brazzers.com 1605 Pornographic Movie Studio
pornmd.com 1626 Pornhub NETWORK
extremetube.com 2149 Pornhub NETWORK
realitykings.com 2786 Pornographic Movie Studio
digitalplayground.com 5109 Pornographic Movie Studio
gaytube.com 5365 Pornhub NETWORK
mofos.com 7845 Amateur Pornography
men.com 9593 Pornographic Movie Studio
twistys.com 10086 Pornographic Movie Studio
mydirtyhobby.com 10618 Amateur Pornography
babes.com 14095 Pornographic Movie Studio
sextube.com 18063 Amateur Pornography
webcams.com 39265 Amateur Pornography
peeperz.com 67466 Pornhub NETWORK
porniq.com 72315 Pornhub NETWORK

Antitrust Lawsuit Against ICM and ICANN[edit]

Manwin filed an antitrust lawsuit in California in November 2011 against ICANN and ICM Registry over the introduction of the .xxx TLD.[57] Amongst their allegations, Manwin claimed that in introducing the new suffix, ICANN and ICM registry had exploited the market by making domain registrations expensive with no price caps in place, and created a need for defensive domain registrations with no provision for companies to block typos of their trademarks. Manwin announced that it would not allow its content to be used on any sites with the suffix, with Fabian Thylmann, managing partner of Manwin saying: "We oppose the .XXX domain and all it stands for. It is my opinion that .XXX domain is an anticompetitive business practice that works a disservice to all companies that do business on the Internet."[58]

In May 2013 Manwin agreed to settle the antitrust lawsuit it brought against ICM Registry over the cost of .xxx web domain names. The settlement will result in discounted wholesale prices of $7.85 a year for .xxx names during May 2013, and similar offers the future.[59] ICM Registry is owned by British former fax-machine mogul Stuart Lawley. The settlement provides that ICM will not pay any money directly to MindGeek.

References[edit]

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External links[edit]