The dating site eHarmony is trading in its older CEO for a younger model.
The site said its 81-year-old founder and CEO, Neil Clark Warren, will hand over leadership of the company to Grant Langston, 50, a vice president at the company and a long-term employee. Warren, who appears in eHarmony ads, will remain as chairman. The changes are immediate, the company said.
The changes to eHarmony comes as the company is facing an increasingly crowded field of dating services, ranging from Tinder to OkCupid. At the same time, eHarmony isn’t remaining content with focusing on matchmaking, given that it debuted a recruitment service earlier this year that seeks to create the perfect match between job seekers and employers. Within three years, the job service may provide as much as 60 percent of the company’s total revenue, Reuters said earlier this year, citing Warren.
On the dating side, eHarmony is going to focus on revamping to catch up with its rivals, Langston told the Los Angeles Times.
“The product hasn’t gotten the attention it needs,” Langston told the publication. “We want to match you on things below the surface, so we’re always going to be more involved than other dating services, but we’ve got to do that in a simpler way with a seamless mobile experience.”
eHarmony didn’t immediately return a request for comment.
eHarmony’s commercials may also be due for an upgrade. Langston said the marketing effort has incorporated more social media messaging, noting that its TV ads had grown less effective because they tended to run for an entire year. Many of the ads featured Warren in an avuncular role, promising to help the lovelorn find their perfect partners.
The company claims that “438 people get married every day as a result of eHarmony’s compatibility matching.” It says about 5 percent of all marriages in the U.S. have stemmed from its services.
Warren, a psychologist and evangelical Christian, created the site to help single people meet compatible partners, although he also came under fire for allegedly discriminating against same-sex couples.
The company created a same-sex dating service called Compatible Partners and settled a lawsuit related to the complaint in 2010.