Earlier this year, the Match Group, which owns the dating service Tinder, filed a lawsuit against rival Bumble, alleging that the company had infringed on patents and misused intellectual property. Just weeks later, Bumble countersued the Match Group for accessing trade secrets fraudulently. Now, Bumble has filed court paperwork for the lawsuit while "actively pursuing an IPO," CEO Whitney Wolfe told TechCrunch. We've reached out to Bumble for a comment.
There's been a lot of back and forth over the last few months, but Match's original lawsuit claimed that Bumble had copied Tinder's swipe interface and "mutual opt-in premise." Bumble responded in two ways: First, in an open letter, the company called the lawsuit a scare tactic to intimidate Bumble because the Match Group had been interested in purchasing the service.
Second, the company filed a countersuit that said Match's suit was intended to drive off other buyers for Bumble, and that during the acquisition talks, Match requested confidential information the company claimed was necessary to price its offer for Bumble. Bumble said that the need for that data was fraudulent, especially considering no offer was forthcoming from Match.
The companies have both worked to avoid taking their cases to court, but it looks like that time has passed. According to TechCrunch, court papers have now been served. This comes at a time when Bumble is growing quickly, and it seems as though even this lawsuit can't stop the woman-founded business from achieving new heights with an initial public offering.