HotOrNot has been reported as sold by TechCrunch for a reported $20 million dollars.
The University of California Berkeley grads, James Hong and Jim Young, have sold HotOrNot for a reported $20 million to Avid Life Media out of Toronto, Canada. Avid Life Media is a network of targeted niche brands that looks to be acquiring web properties but their website has nothing more then a logo of the company on it.
Hong confirmed the sale but would not discuss the price, which was reported on the TechCrunch blog. I originally met James at a dating conference in Miami a few years back which I am sure he was there looking for m&a contacts.
HotorNot was launched back in the big dot-com craze in 2000 and created a social website phenomenon which then led to other similar photo rating sites like facethejury and ratemybody. The site hasn’t changed much since then except for the addition of a poorly executed dating service extension of the site and some facebook apps. Hong and Young will not be regular contributors to the new company. Hong posted in his blog that “All good things must come to an end. Eight years is a long time, and both Jim and I were mentally prepared to move on years ago.”
I wonder what this business would have been valued at in the internet hay days. Maybe 5x what they got?