Dating site Cupid in talks to sell ‘casual’ sites

Picture: Complimentary
Picture: Complimentary
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Online dating specialist Cupid has revealed that it is in early-stage talks over a possible bid for its “casual” websites.

The Edinburgh-based firm, which recently rejected claims from a Ukranian newspaper that its staff posed as customers to encourage others to take out subscriptions, stressed there was no certainty of a deal emerging.

Aim-quoted Cupid, headed by co-founder Bill Dobbie, pictured right, said it was looking at ways of “improving the customer experience” but these were expected to have a short-term impact on its revenues and profitability. It also said underlying pre-tax profits for the first half of the year are expected to fall to about £2.5 million, from £5.9m a year ago, because of an increase in marketing costs.

Revenues are predicted to rise about 13 per cent following a “strong performance” from its niche service, Uniform Dating, along with its French business AGL. It is understood that the talks centre on the possible sale of sites such as benaughty.com and flirt.com.