|Key people||Markus Frind, Founder and CEO|
|Revenue||$10 million USD (2008 estimated)|
PlentyOfFish (POF) is an online dating service, popular primarily in Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, Brazil and the United States. The company, based in Vancouver, British Columbia generates revenue through advertising. While it is free to use, PlentyOfFish offers premium services as part of their upgraded membership, such as seeing when a user profile was viewed, and allowing users to see whether a message has been read and/or deleted.
In 2004, PlentyOfFish became a full-time business for Frind. He ran the site independently until 2008, when he began hiring other employees at his new Vancouver headquarters. In 2009, PlentyOfFish also launched a contest with Lady Gaga allowing single members to go together and meet the singer during her "Fame Monster" tour.
The website for PlentyOfFish appeared in several music videos in 2010: in Lady Gaga's "Telephone", Natasha Bedingfield's "Touch", Ke$ha's "We R Who We R", Flo Rida and Akon's "Available", Jason Derulo's "Ridin' Solo", and 3OH!3's "Double Vision". In 2011, it appeared in Britney Spears's music video for "Hold It Against Me". Many of these appearances are undisclosed paid product placements which have met with highly negative reviews.
In 2010, PlentyOfFish launched mobile apps for iPhone and Android. As of May 2013, about 70% of POF´s log-ins come from mobile devices. In a June 2014 interview, Frind edited this number and now attributes 85% of all PlentyOfFish traffic to mobile with the number growing weekly.
On January 21, 2011, it was discovered that the PlentyOfFish website had been hacked which exposed the personal and password information on nearly 30 million user accounts. Since the alleged hacking incident, Frind alleges he has identified persons he believes are responsible for the hacking, and alleges he is threatening legal action in response to the widespread negative media exposure. At the time this received global media exposure and security experts blame PlentyOfFish for the security and privacy lapse specifically for keeping users' passwords unsecured.
On February 28, 2012, the parents of US Army Lieutenant Peter Burks sued PlentyOfFish. The parents' lawsuit alleges photos of their son, who was killed in Iraq in 2007, were used without permission. The parents are seeking compensatory and punitive damages.
In an August 2012 interview, Markus Frind stated that based on the millions of relationships and marriages PlentyOfFish has created over the past several years, it is estimated that over 1 million babies have been born as a result of the website.
On May 20, 2013, Frind implemented several changes to the website with the stated goal of focusing on "meaningful relationships." Among these changes were the removal of the "intimate encounters" option. A related feature that was eliminated was the option to contact clients of age differences greater than "Markus," presumably Frind, found tasteful. Although the PlentyOfFish site and its "matching" criteria continue to match couples with age differences greater than the 14 year guideline, attempts to contact the "matches" resulted in an inbox message from Markus stating, among other things, "[t]here is no reason for a 50 year old man to contact a 18 year old women [sic]." Another implementation included with the changes is no longer allowing male users to attach images to messages.
PlentyOfFish employs 66 people, including developers, marketing managers, and customer service representatives. The site relies on volunteers to monitor forums and sort through the 50,000 new photos that come in each day.
The website uses the following technology:
- Registered users: 76,000,000 (February 2014)
- Dating site ranking in the UK: 1 (Comscore May 2011)
- Dating site ranking in Canada: 1 (Comscore June 2008)
- Dating site ranking Worldwide: 1 (Hitwise, August 2011)
- U.S. site by market share: 1, with 18.57% of the market (Hitwise, August 2012)
- Number of page views a month: 2 Billion (April 2012)
PEER 1's PlentyofFish.com video customer story won three bronze awards in the Video categories of Infomercial, How-To/Instructional and Comedy at the Telly Awards.
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