According to Forbes, Sean Rad was removed from the helm of affairs at Tinder because of the sexual harassment suit filed against him by Whitney Wolfe – co-founder of Tinder. It was stated in the lawsuit that it was Rad who first stripped Wolfe of her title as co-founder on the grounds of gender. Rad later on fired Wolfe because of her breakup with other co-founder, Justin Mateen. This lawsuit later saw to the demotion of Rad.
Further investigation revealed that Rad was let go by owner of Tinder, IAC, to allow him to clear his head and focus more on the company’s products. In a statement by Rad, “The board thought the best path was to bring in a CEO, thinking if we opened up the role it would attract better talents”. He ended it by stating, “I strongly disagreed.”
Looking for a Replacement
The company spent over four months searching for a worthy replacement. Chris Payne was brought in as a good replacement to help improve the dating app. Payne was able to achieve success when he rolled out the company’s first ever paid product, Tinder Plus. This paid version gave its users a feature to choose and undo decisions about a potential romantic match. This version allowed users to pay monthly to get access to this new feature.
Rad revealed in November for the company to get a good replacement for him, they had to look for “an Eric Schmidt-like person”. According to him, “Christopher brings invaluable experience running consumer technology businesses that operate at massive scale.”
Matt Cohler, a board member, threw more light as to why they had to let go of Payne when he said, “It became clear after a few months that it wasn’t going to become a long-term fit”. He went on to suggest that the board had to find a way to make the leader of the company conform to the business in general and vice versa. It also admits it was not an easy decision but was proud that board members were honest enough to face the truth. To this he said, “In this kind of a company that is growing so rapidly, everything needs to happen quickly. I’m proud of the fact that everyone around the table had the maturity to look the situation in the eye and take action.”
What is not clearly known at the moment is if Rad would be the acting CEO until the company finds a better replacement or he will be sitting at the helm of affairs permanently.