By Kevin Kelleher
August 16, 2018

Four Tinder employees who are suing the dating-app’s parent Match Group have been placed on administrative leave, a source familiar to the situation told Fortune.

Tinder founder Sean Rad and nine current and former Tinder executives filed suit this week against IAC/InterActiveCorp and Match Group for at least $2 billion. The plaintiffs claim that Tinder’s current owners “robbed Tinder employees” and that an IAC executive sexually harassed Tinder vice president Rosette Pambakian.

Four of Tinder’s employees who are plaintiffs on the lawsuit have been placed on an indefinite administrative leave, said the source, who asked to remain anonymous.

Also on Wednesday, Pambakian, Tinder’s head of brand marketing and communications and one of the employees placed on leave, sent an email to colleagues at the company explaining her reasons for joining the lawsuit.

“I am very proud of Tinder and the work that our amazing team is doing here,” Pambakian wrote. “I joined this suit because I believe that it is important to shine a light on the terrible practices I have witnessed from Match, including covering up sexual misconduct by senior executives and depriving talented employees of hard-earned compensation.”

In addition to the plaintiffs’ claims of IAC and Match “undermining Tinder’s valuation and unlawfully stripping away their Tinder stock options,” they leveled the allegation that former Tinder CEO Greg Blatt “groped and sexually harassed” Pambakian at a company holiday party in 2016.

IAC did not immediately reply to a request for comment from Fortune. IAC did issue a reply to the lawsuit’s content, saying that the “merry band of plaintiffs did not like the outcome” of an option valuation process conducted by two independent banks.

While IAC’s statement said that “sour grapes alone do not a lawsuit make,” it did not directly address the allegation of sexual misconduct.

Pambakian’s full email is below.

Subject: Note from Rosette
Team,
As you may already know, a group of founders, executives, and early employees of Tinder—including me—filed a lawsuit today against IAC and Match. I want to share with you my reasons for joining the lawsuit. But please know at the outset that I am very proud of Tinder and the work that our amazing team is doing here.
The lawsuit we filed today lays out our allegations against IAC and Match in detail. I joined this suit because I believe that it is important to shine a light on the terrible practices I have witnessed from Match, including covering up sexual misconduct by senior executives and depriving talented employees of hard-earned compensation. In spite of this, I have stayed at Tinder because I won’t let other people’s misconduct dictate my future. I love this company and working with all of you.
Tinder will always be a defining experience in my professional career and personal development. I wrote the very first press release for Tinder while working at a small PR agency in 2012. Tinder’s founders had walked into my office and showed me an app they built. Little did I know that we would join forces and go on to build Tinder into a global phenomenon and a piece of the pop culture lexicon, which would have a profound impact on millions of people’s lives.
After I spent a year helping to launch Tinder in 2012, I was offered the career opportunity of a lifetime and brought in-house to create Tinder’s global communications division. As a one-woman show back then, I felt the impact my work had on Tinder’s growth and brand awareness every day. My role eventually expanded into leading the marketing division, and I have poured my life into that work for the past six years. I take great pride in having grown Tinder from scrappy startup to global powerhouse, and, with all of your hard work, maintaining Tinder’s position as an industry leader.
We built a product together that is used in 196 countries and that changed the culture of how people meet and date. We are a global phenomenon and a cultural icon. That did not happen by accident. It was not luck. It was through the blood, sweat, and tears of an ambitious group of young people who had vision and built a game-changing company from the ground up.
As Tinder employees, we made a deal with IAC and Match that we would work hard and, in return, if we were successful, the company would share the fruits of that success with us. IAC and Match violated those contracts and worse. The ten of us are suing today to right that wrong.
I will not be able to discuss more about the lawsuit with you at this time. But, again, please know that I am proud of each and every one of you who dedicates yourself to Tinder’s success. I am impressed by the work that we have done and continue to do together.
Best,
Rosette

Update: This story has been updated to note that Pambakian was one of the Tinder employees placed on administrative leave.

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