IAC: Diller Finalizes Plans To Spin Off 20% Of Match.com

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Media conglomerate IAC/InterActiveCorp, controlled by billionaire Barry Diller, announced on Thursday, June 25th that it was planning an IPO of the Match Group (the parent of Match.com). Media industry analysts had been anticipating this move since Barry Diller combined all of his dating services into a separate business unit around a year and a half ago.

According to the firm, the BoD has already approved the IPO. The statement noted Match Group will sell less than 20% of its common stock in the IPO, anticipated to finalize in the fourth quarter of this year.

Also of note, IACI finally got a CEO, as the firm named Joey Levin, the former head of its search and applications business, as its new chief executive officer. The firm has had no CEO since the December 2013 restructuring of the Match.com services into a separate unit. Company sources say that unit heads had been reporting directly to Diller during the interim.

Shares of IACI were up as much as 8% in pre-market trading.

Statement from Barry Diller

“Over the last two decades, IAC and its progeny have grown into seven separate public companies with a current shareholder value of over $44 billion,” Chairman Barry Diller commented in the presser announcing the spin off.  He continued to say: “I’ve long felt that as entities grow into size and maturity it’s healthy to give them separation and independence from a mother church,”

More on Match Group (Match.com)

Match Group is composed of dating services Match.com, Tinder and OkCupid, as well as content sites the Princeton Review, Investopedia and the Daily Beast.

In their last earnings report, the unit reported that revenues had increased by 13% from the year-earlier period to $239.2 million. That is close to 31% of IAC’s top line revenues. Of interest, paid subscribers to its dating sites grew 16%, but overall profits for the unit were down 36%.

IAC/InterActiveCorp also noted that Sam Yagan, the co-founder of OkCupid, will stay on as CEO of Match Group.

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