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EMAILED ON September 12, 2017 BY THE HUSTLE

Arranged marriage site raising $78m IPO

Dating apps like Tinder and Bumble have been crushin’ it lately, but there’s also money in the marriage industry — specifically the $50B Indian wedding industry.

One of India’s oldest platforms for arranged marriages, Matrimony.com, has officially begun raising a $78.3m IPO, at an estimated $400m valuation.

Launched in 2000, Matrimony oversees marriage sites like Bharatmatrimony.com and Elitematrimony.com and will be one of just a few Indian internet firms to IPO (the last being e-commerce company, Infibeam, over a year ago).

Arranged marriages in India are alive and well

A 2013 study found that upwards of 74% of Indians aged 18-35 prefer an arranged marriage over a “free-choice,” and some sources report that as many as 90% of marriages in India are arranged.

This, combined with increasingly affordable internet service in the countryside, has helped Matrimony bring in nearly $47m in revenue last year.

Matrimony allows users (parents and family members) to search for partners for their children based on religion, language, castes — even astrological signs deemed unfavorable for marriage.

A small but mighty userbase

Matrimony has about 3.2m users across its sites, (compared with Tinder’s 50m worldwide), but over 70% of them (2.3m) are paid subscribers, compared to an estimated 24% of Tinder’s users.

The company’s ability to monetize, along with growing Indian internet access, could bode well for their growth — and pave the way for more Indian internet IPOs.