Online dating giant Badoo has just acquired the controversial male-rating app Lulu.
Lulu was founded back in 2011, and made headlines by allowing its female users to rate the looks, ambition, manners and sexual performance of men.
Created by Canadian-born Alexandra Chong, the app was a female-only community platform designed to make dating safer for women, by letting them share information, rate men and chat about dating and sex.
And now London-based dating giant Badoo, founded by Andrey Andreev in 2006, has acquired the app for an undisclosed amount.
With the acquisition, the founder & CEO of Lulu, Alexandra Chong, will become the President of Badoo, focusing on international expansion, business development and communications.
Reports say the deal for the company, which has raised over $15m in funding from investors like Passion Capital, PROfounders and Venrock, was a mixture of cash and stock.
Speaking about the acquisition, Alexandra Chong said: “This is a tremendously exciting next step for Lulu, and I am thrilled to be joining forces with Badoo. Badoo, is a natural fit for the Lulu community. In line with Lulu’s vision, Badoo is committed to providing the very best online dating experiences for women in particular.
“Andrey and his team have done an outstanding job growing the product into a truly global community offering a unique local experience for its users. In joining forces with the Badoo family, Lulu girls and guys will have the ultimate dating experience.”
And with this deal, Lulu has had a complete revamp – something noticed by Engadget in January – completely replacing its former male-rating focus, and turning it into more of a straightforward dating app.
Lulu will now essentially be integrated with Badoo, letting its 6m users connect with Badoo’s massive user base, as the app begins to bring in revenue.
A spokesperson for Badoo said: “Starting today, Lulu will be powered by Badoo technology and offer the complete Badoo dating experience, allowing Lulu’s 6 millions users to interact and connect with Badoo’s 300 million users, via Badoo’s unique set of dating features and functionalities.”
Badoo also said that former Lulu users will need to register as a first-time member to use the new dating app.
Badoo was founded back in 2006, and has over 300m users in 190 countries, with around 60m MAUs, and also owns Hot or Not and Blendr.
Speaking about the acquisition, the founder of Badoo, Andrey Andreev, said: “We’re thrilled to be integrating Lulu to Badoo, and to be bringing former Lulu Founder and CEO Alexandra Chong onboard as President. She will oversee the company’s global expansion strategy, business development and communications.
“Alexandra brings deep expertise in building female-focused mobile dating properties and will be an amazing partner to help sustain Badoo’s exponential growth and take the company and user experience to the next level.”