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Tinder co-founder Sean Rad. Photo: S3studio/Getty Images

Match Group on Tuesday responded to Sean Rad and the other founders of dating app Tinder, who sued Match and parent company IAC two months ago for allegedly undervaluing Tinder, thus depriving them of compensation.

The defense: Match, which has always owned Tinder, argues in a new court filing that this is just sour grapes from those who sold their shares too soon and is asking a New York court to dismiss the lawsuit.

Among Match's claims:

  • Rad's argument that Tinder's $3 billion valuation was "fraudulent" is invalid, given that he was intimately involved with the valuation process led by Barclays and Deutsche Bank. For example, Rad, his bankers and his attorneys allegedly participated in at least eight such meetings, including four of them in person.
  • Both Match and Rad underestimated Tinder's future performance, including a new product called Tinder Gold. For example, Rad's higher estimate for 2018 revenue was $503 million, whereas Tinder is actually on track for around $800 million.
  • Rad chose to sell his Match Group shares, netting around $400 million, while his co-plaintiffs did the same. Had they believed Tinder would outperform, Match argues, they would have held onto their stock and reaped the benefits (Match shares are up more than 60% year to date).
  • The challenge is being brought too late, as there is a 90-day window in New York for challenging arbitration and appraisal awards.

Some of the original plaintiffs dropped out of the lawsuit several weeks after it was filed. Among them was Rosette Pambakian, former Tinder VP of marketing and communications, who alleged sexual harassment against former Match Group CEO and Chairman Greg Blatt.

Match's request for dismissal does not address the harassment allegations, which it has previously denied.

An attorney for Tinder, Orin Snyder, told Axios in a statement: "IAC and Match know they cheated Tinder employees out of billions of dollars. Their sham valuation is a case study of corporate dishonesty and corruption. When the jury sees the evidence, we are confident the talented team who built Tinder will prevail."

Correction: The story has been corrected to show that Greg Blatt is no longer at Match Group.

Go deeper

Stacey Abrams launches second campaign for Georgia governor

Photo: Eze Amos/Getty Images

Stacey Abrams, voting rights activist and former 2018 candidate for Georgia governor, is running for the position again in 2022. Abrams would be the first Black female governor in the country.

Why it matters: Abrams caught national attention in 2018 by narrowly losing an election to Republican Gov. Brian Kemp in a state held firmly by the GOP for nearly two decades.

First known U.S. case of Omicron variant identified in California

Dr. Anthony Fauci speaks during the daily briefing at the White House on Dec. 1. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

The first known U.S. case of the Omicron variant was detected in California, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed Wednesday.

Driving the news: The confirmed case was detected in a traveler returning from South Africa who was fully vaccinated and has mild symptoms, according to the CDC.

Supreme Court appears likely to roll back abortion rights

Abortion rights advocates and anti-abortion protesters demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 1. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Wednesday seemed likely to weaken abortion rights and perhaps to let states ban the procedure altogether.

The intrigue: The court seemed likely to throw out the framework established in Roe v. Wade, but it wasn't clear whether a majority of the justices were inclined to overturn the court's precedents entirely.