Former Tinder Exec Sues, Alleges Ex-CEO Groped Her

Rosette Pambakian alleges the incident happened at a 2016 company party
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 6, 2019 12:07 AM CDT

(Newser) – A former executive at Tinder sued the dating site and its former CEO on Monday alleging he sexually assaulted her and the company fired her from her job as VP of marketing and communications in retaliation for her complaint, reports CNBC. Rosette Pambakian said in the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court that former Match Group and Tinder CEO Gregory Blatt made a lewd overture to her at a company holiday party in 2016 at a Los Angeles hotel. Pambakian said she went with two work friends to a hotel room upstairs to get away from Blatt, but he later showed up, reports the AP. Per the complaint, he "began forcibly groping [Pambakian’s] breasts and upper thighs, and kissing her shoulders, neck and chest" without her consent. She said her two colleagues, including Blatt's executive assistant, witnessed the encounter.

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The company owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp, which is controlled by media mogul Barry Diller, conducted a sham investigation that concluded the behavior was "consensual cuddling," her lawyers said. The Match Group denied Pambakian was fired as retaliation for reporting Blatt and said an independent investigation found there was no violation of law or company policy, according to a statement from its board. Pambakian and other Tinder executives sued Match and IAC seeking $2 billion a year ago for allegedly bilking them by manipulating financial information to create a lowball estimate of Tinder's value. That lawsuit included Pambakian's sexual misconduct allegations. At the time, the company said that lawsuit was meritless. Blatt left Tinder in 2017.

(Read more Tinder stories.)

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