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The fresh capital brought about by the listing enabled the company to perform some strategic acquisitions in markets where it had detected potential, like France, Germany, the US, and Brazil.On 24 July 2012, Cupid plc announced that it had acquired the French dating site Assistance Genie Logiciel (AGL) for the sum of €3.7 million.By early March 2010, the user base was growing at a rate of 300,000 per month, and new products were succeeding in increasing these numbers and expanding the user base.A year later, in May 2011, the company boasted 23 million members in 39 countries.However, the markets reacted, shares fell and we had a lot of work to do,” he says.“I came in to make the business more consumer-centric.”Restructuring also meant offloading the “casual” dating sites for £45.1 million to Polyakov’s Grendall Investment Limited in order to focus on its niche and mainstream sites.

Users told the BBC that they had received many messages from potential dates as free users of the site but that, when they paid for membership to be able to reply, the volume of messages dramatically decreased.But they have since plunged below 50p and last week traded at 43p.Gripton admits the bad publicity around the business had been a big problem.In 2006, Polyakov and Dobbie acquired the Easy Date business and brand to complement and serve as an umbrella for their network of sites, which had been experiencing a steady growth in user base.The company quickly grew its user base – by 2007 they had their first million paying users, and a few years after that they hit an impressive 13 million paying users across all networks.

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