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​Bumble Founder Whitney Wolfe Herd Becomes World’s Youngest Self-Made Female Billionaire

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​Bumble Founder Whitney Wolfe Herd Becomes World’s Youngest Self-Made Female Billionaire

Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe Herd has become the world's youngest self-made female billionaire at 31 after the company made its stock market debut.

Shares of the dating app soared in its IPO (initial public offering) on Thursday (11 February), in turn sending Wolfe Herd's nearly 12 percent stake in the company to $1.6 billion (£1.1bn) as of 12.40pm ET yesterday.

Forbes explains how shares opened at $76 (£55) on the Nasdaq, well above its initial public offering price of $43 (£31) per share.

According to Bumble's prospectus, Wolfe Herd owns a total of 21.54 million shares, which is the equivalent to 11.6 percent of the company.

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After shares soared by more than 76 percent, the company was valued at $14bn (£10bn), making Wolfe Herd a very wealthy woman indeed.

Bumble was founded by Wolfe Herd in 2014 after she left Tinder, her previous employer.

She sued Tinder for sexual harassment, alleging that former boss and boyfriend Justin Mateen had sent threats, derogatory texts and stripped her of her co-founder title at Tinder.

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According to the Guardian, parent company Match Group - which denied the allegations - ended up paying about $1 million (£725,000) to settle the dispute.

After Wolfe Herd left Tinder, she went on to start Bumble while working with London-based Russian billionaire Andrey Andreev, who had built online dating apps for the European and Latin American markets.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

The app is different to other dating services of its kind as women have to be the ones to reach out to prospective dates.

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Andreev exited the company in November 2020 following allegations of what Forbes refers to as 'a misogynistic atmosphere in the London office'.

The company denied the majority of the allegations and launched an internal investigation headed up by employment firm Doyle Clayton.

It concluded that while the allegations of a misogynistic environment were 'incorrect', it had identified 'a small number of current and former employees who feel that there are elements of sexism' within the company.

Private equity firm Blackstone Group then stepped up to buy Andreev's stake that month - with the deal valuing the company at $3bn (£2.1bn).

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After making its strong stock market debut, Bumble now joins the likes of Snowflake, Airbnb and DoorDash, all of which had similarly solid first days when they opened last year.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: World News, News, Bumble

Jess Hardiman
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