ProSiebenSat.1 to Buy Majority Stake in Dating Website Parship

  • Purchase of 50 percent plus one share values Parship at EU300m
  • ProSiebenSat.1 says it will raise mid-term guidance next month

ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE is buying a majority stake in Parship Elite Group from Oakley Capital Private Equity II in a deal valuing the online dating site at 300 million euros ($335 million) as the German broadcaster expands its digital businesses.

ProSiebenSat.1 will buy 50 percent plus one share for 100 million euros and replace Parship’s existing loans of 100 million euros, it said Monday in an e-mailed statement. The broadcaster said it will raise its 2018 financial targets at a capital markets day on Oct. 13 to reflect future contributions from Parship.

The broadcaster, which uses TV advertising to promote its brands, seeks to grow Parship’s businesses in Germany and Europe. ProSiebenSat.1 is accelerating its push into internet, having invested in Swedish travel website Etraveli Holding AB, London-based soccer website and U.S. virtual-reality startup Jaunt Inc. in the past months.

“Online matchmaking, which is the most relevant category for Parship Elite Group’s business, is the most sustainable segment of the online dating market, growing at an annual rate of 10 percent," ProSiebenSat.1 Board Member Christian Wegner, who heads the company’s digital business, said in the statement.

Parship, which also owns the ElitePartner brand, started in Germany in 2001 and has expanded to at least 12 other markets including Sweden, France and Mexico. Parship’s core feature is an algorithm that matches users after a compatibility test. While people can register and take the test for free, reaching out to others requires a premium membership costing 30 euros to 65 euros a month.

ProSiebenSat.1 gained 0.4 percent to 39.46 euros as of 10:18 a.m. in Frankfurt.