Die Geschäftsführung von Parship (.v.l.): Henning Rönneberg, Tim Schiffers, Marc Schachtel © Parship

ProSiebenSat.1 group takes over Parship and ElitePartner

Media company takes over majority share in a deal worth EUR 100 million. Purchase is ProSiebenSat.1 Group's second big investment in a Hamburg-based company in days

The ProSiebenSat.1 Group is taking over a 50 per cent stake plus one share in the Parship online dating agency in a deal worth EUR 100 million, the companies announced Monday (September 5th). As part of the deal, ProSiebenSat.1 will replace existing PARSHIP ELITE Group loans to the sum of EUR 100 million by providing preferred capital with a fixed interest rate. Founded in 2001 by the Georg von Holtzbrinck publishing group, the Parship Elite Group is a market leader of online dating agencies in the German-speaking region with its Parship and ElitePartner brands.

The previous owners, Oakley Capital Private Equity II and the existing management will have a minority share of just under 50 per cent. The acquisition is subject to the approval of cartel authorities, said ProSiebenSat.1.

Know-how, networks and TV campaigns

Commenting on the deal, Tim Schiffers, CEO of the Parship Elite Group, said: “The investment by ProSiebenSat.1 will give us further momentum to attain our growth targets.” ProSiebenSat.1 will support the company with know-how, networks and TV campaigns, he added. Christian Wegner, a member of the Executive Board of Digital Ventures & Commerce of the ProSiebenSat.1 Group, stressed: “The acquisition of the PARSHIP ELITE Group underscores our strategic focus on established, profitable growth companies that are market leaders in their segment, stand to benefit considerably from TV advertising, and reinforce our digital business.”

The online dating agencies Parship und ElitePartner use a scientific procedure to help single people find long-term partnerships. At present, the company employs over 230 employees at its headquarters in Hamburg and at a branch in Amsterdam.

Latest investment comes after “About You” move

The takeover of Parship by ProSiebenSat.1 comes just days after the company announced a participation in the Hamburg-based online fashion shop “About You”. The e-commerce start-up Collins, obtained SevenVentures, the media-investing arm of ProSiebenSat.1, and German Media Pool’s media partner RTL II, as investors from September 1. The Otto Group has a majority share in About You via the Holding Collins, said Collins bringing the value of the start-up to EUR 300 million.

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