Genes reunited dating
We saw the internet as the future.”But one investor who ran the rule over the business when it was later put up for sale says the reality was rather less romantic: “The founders went to America to look at which sites were performing well there with the idea of repeating that success over here.” The website that impressed them most, he says, was classmates.com, a site that helped users find classmates from school and college or their workplaces and the military.Whatever the truth of the matter, Friends uk was launched in 2000 and users started registering at the rate of one to five a day.“I could see it was a fantastic brand, for which users felt immense loyalty,” Murphy said later.“But I also believed only a fraction of the brand’s potential had been monetised.”With the new man at the helm, Friends Reunited launched a dating service and Genes Reunited, which traces users’ ancestors, as well as expanding into CDs and books.Turnover grew to £12million and the site was named by Nielsen ratings as among the 10 most influential sites ever.Just two years after Murphy’s arrival, the company was sold to ITV, and the three founders left on completion of the deal which earned them £30million apiece. By now the online social network market was becoming increasingly crowded.However, rather naively, we thought we could do everything and it became very stressful and completely 24/7.Just keeping the site going was a challenge under the amount of traffic we were getting.” What they needed was a big hitter from the business world to take the company to the next level.
He first got involved after the Pankhursts and Porter tried to sell their business for £18million in 2002, when it was making revenues of £6.6million a year.
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“I describe this period as both the best and worst of my life,” says Pankhurst.
“On the positive side the site just didn’t stop growing and revenue was flowing — and we were having a fantastic time being interviewed on TV and radio nearly every other day.