GROWLr was the world’s first gay bear dating application which launched in 2010. It was announced on March 6th that it has been sold for $11.8 million to the Meet Group.
GROWLr was founded by Coley Cummiskey and is seen as the genesis for other bear dating apps that have been established since. GROWLr has always been a key part of the bear community, offering support to many bear events around the world and giving a voice to the emerging bear community back in 2010. Plus, it was the first dating app made for bears and by bears!
Bear World Magazine featured an interview with Coley Cummiskey in our June 2013 issue. In it Coley said: “After developing a successful few apps, including one that worked with Facebook, I decided I needed to focus on something that was closer to who I am as a person, who I am as a developer. I’ve always thought I had to be a card carrying member of the bear community, and I love being a bear, and it kind of took off from there. I wrote something that I would use, that I would like, so I knew that other people would use it too… so, in November 2010, I launched GROWLr!”
GROWLr will join the Meet Group’s existing portfolio of MeetMe, Skout, Tagged and LOVOO, the most popular dating app in German-speaking countries. It will be the Group’s first entry into the same-sex dating market.
“I’m excited to announce the acquisition of Growlr, which provides a meaningful step into the large same-sex dating market and expands the base of users to whom we can deliver our live video product,” said Geoff Cook, the CEO of Meet Group who founded the company in 2005 as MyYearbook.com.
“Similar to what we have done with our other acquired properties, we plan to be aggressive in bringing our video model to Growlr,” he continued. “We expect to begin rolling out live video on Growlr in the fourth quarter of 2019.”
This takeover is similar to the buyout of Grindr who were purchased last year by Chinese-based Kunlun Group. Following the takeover, the straight President of Grindr got into hot water last year with comments he made that appeared to be homophobic.