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Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe Herd received $125M payout in 2019

REVEALED: Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd received a $125M payout ahead of its upcoming IPO

  • Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd’s payout was revealed in an regulatory filing ahead of the company’s initial public offering 
  • She received the cash when the company reorganized after private equity firm Blackstone purchased a majority in 2019 
  • The filing also showed that Bumble loaned $119million to a ‘limited partnership’ controlled by Wolfe Herd, called Beehive Holdings III, in January 2020
  • That loan was paid back in full plus interest earlier this month 
  • Wolfe Herd, 30, landed at number 39 on Forbes’ list of America’s richest self-made women last year, with a net worth of $500billion

Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd (pictured) received a $125million cash payout in 2019, the company revealed in newly-released documents ahead of its upcoming initial public offering

Bumble founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd received a $125million cash payout in 2019, the company revealed in newly-released documents ahead of its upcoming initial public offering.  

Wolfe Herd, who founded the female-empowering dating app in 2014, received the payout when the company reorganized after private equity firm Blackstone purchased a majority in 2019, according to an IPO prospectus obtained by the Financial Times

The filing also showed that Bumble loaned $119million to a ‘Delaware limited partnership’ controlled by Wolfe Herd, called Beehive Holdings III, in January 2020. That loan was paid back plus interest earlier this month, the filing showed.  

Wolfe Herd was installed as chief executive of Bumble after Blackstone stepped in, in the wake of toxic work environment allegation against the previous CEO. 

The filing showed that the company has been growing at a slower pace since the reorganization, with a net loss of $84million between January 29, 2020, and September 30, 2020.  

Wolfe Herd (pictured with her son Bo last year) founded Bumble in 2014. She was installed as CEO in 2019 when the company was reorganized after Blackstone purchased a majority stake

Wolfe Herd (pictured with her son Bo last year) founded Bumble in 2014. She was installed as CEO in 2019 when the company was reorganized after Blackstone purchased a majority stake

Bumble announced its plans to enter the NASDAQ with the ticker symbol ‘BMBL’ late last year, under an IPO led by Goldman Sachs and Citigroup. 

It filed for an IPO of up to $100 million, although that is a placeholder amount and is expected to change. The move came at a time when companies are seeking to capitalize on what has been the strongest IPO market in two decades, according to Reuters.  

In its IPO filing, the dating app, which has been immensely popular with millennials, said it had 42 million monthly active users as of the third quarter of 2020, and 2.4 million paying users in the nine months ended September.

For the period from January 29 to September 30, Bumble’s revenue came in at $376.6 million. It reported revenue of $362.6 million for the first nine months of 2019.

Bumble announced its plans to enter the NASDAQ with the ticker symbol 'BMBL' late last year, under an IPO led by Goldman Sachs and Citigroup (file photo)

Bumble announced its plans to enter the NASDAQ with the ticker symbol ‘BMBL’ late last year, under an IPO led by Goldman Sachs and Citigroup (file photo)

Wolfe Herd, who has been known for living a life filled with lavish parties, overseas trips and A-list friends, landed on Forbes’ list of America’s richest self-made women last year, coming in at number 39. Her net worth is estimated at $500million. 

Before Bumble, the 30-year-old co-founded Tinder, but left in 2014 after successfully suing the company for sexual harassment by her co-founder and ex-boyfriend Justin Mateen.  

She received her massive payout and loan from Bumble in 2019 after being dragged into another saga involving her Russian billionaire business partner Andrey Andreev, who backed Bumble’s launch.  

Andrey was accused of overseeing a misogynistic and sleazy culture within Bumble’s parent company, Badoo, where former staffers said the objectification of women was routine and there were cocaine and ketamine-fueled parties with prostitutes in the office.

The claims posed somewhat of a problem for Wolfe Herd and Bumble given the dating app prides itself on empowering women and giving them a safer environment by letting them make the first move.   

But Wolfe Herd managed to come out on top after Andrey’s departure, as she was installed as CEO and received a 19 percent stake in the company.     

Wolfe Herd, who has been known for living a life filled with lavish parties, overseas trips and A-list friends, landed on Forbes' list of America's richest self-made women last year, coming in at number 39. She is pictured (right) with actress Priyanka Chopra (left) in 2018

Wolfe Herd, who has been known for living a life filled with lavish parties, overseas trips and A-list friends, landed on Forbes’ list of America’s richest self-made women last year, coming in at number 39. She is pictured (right) with actress Priyanka Chopra (left) in 2018

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