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Team announcement

Spark Networks names Gitte Bendzulla Chief Operations Officer

Spark Networks names Gitte Bendzulla Chief Operations Officer

Online dating company Spark Networks has promoted Gitte Bendzulla to become its first female Chief Operations Officer. Ms. Bendzulla will be responsible for ensuring operational efficiency, supporting the growth and innovation for its range of premium dating brands. She will report to Spark CEO Eric Eichmann and also continue in her roles as Chief Legal Officer and managing director. "I'm excited to have Gitte promoted to Chief Operating Officer and Chief Legal Officer at Spark,” said Mr. Eichmann. “Her knowledge of the company, commitment to excellence and terrific leadership will serve us well as we enter a critical phase for Spark's success. I look forward to working closely with Gitte for many years to come." Ms. Bendzulla joined Spark Networks as General Counsel in 2018, and in that time has also taken on the roles of managing director, Chief of Staff, and Chief Legal Officer. Prior to that, she held senior legal roles with global and European companies including Juniper Networks, APM Terminals, Eaton Industries and the SITA Suez group. "I am thrilled to expand my responsibilities at Spark Networks and support Spark as COO on its exciting journey ahead. My appointment underlines Spark's strong commitment to inclusion, one of the cornerstones of the Spark culture and a driver for success,” said Ms. Bendzulla. “My peers and I are committed to working together to enhance operational excellence and foster diversity, allowing us to continue to gain growth and productivity in a purposeful workplace."

Team announcement

Tobias Plaputta named CTO at Spark Networks

Tobias Plaputta named CTO at Spark Networks

Online dating company Spark Networks has promoted Tobias Plaputta to Chief Technology Officer. In his new role, Mr. Plaputta will oversee the company’s technological innovation across all its brands, including Zoosk, EliteSingles, SilverSingles, Christian Mingle, Jdate, JSwipe and eDarling. "I am very excited to have Tobias Plaputta take on the CTO role at a critical moment in Spark's development,” said Spark Networks CEO Eric Eichmann. “Tobias has a strong history of technology management, people leadership and innovation. I am sure that under Tobias' stewardship, our product and technology investments will pay off handsomely. " Mr. Plaputta has been with Spark Networks for the last 10 years, most recently as General Manager of the Spark app. Prior to that, he had a seven year career at Affinitas GmbH, finishing as Director of Engineering for its Core Platform. "Over the past 10 years I had the chance to work on almost all parts of our tech organization, and with my passion for our products and for building highly motivated teams, I can't wait to see what we can achieve and deliver to our customers over the next few years," said Mr. Plaputta.

Team announcement

Chelsea Grayson and Eric Eichman Appointed to Board of Directors at Sparks Networks

Chelsea Grayson and Eric Eichman Appointed to Board of Directors at Sparks Networks

Sparks Networks, American's second-largest dating company consisting of a wide portfolio of premium and freemium dating apps such as Zoosk, EliteSingles, and eDarling, has announced the appointment of Chelsea Grayson and Eric Eichman as their newest Board of Directors members, effective as of July 29th, 2020. "We believe the strong additions of Chelsea and Eric to the Board will further advance Spark Network's growth initiatives and development strategy," said David Khalil, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Spark Networks. "Chelsea is an experienced public company executive with a proven track record of developing strong consumer-facing brands and creating long-term value. Eric is a visionary leader, helping to reposition the Company, and whose insight, expertise, and strong knowledge of our sector make him a natural addition to our Board of Directors." Chelsea Grayson is the former CEO of True Religion and American Apparel, currently serves on the Board of Vireo Health chairing the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee. She is also an Executive-in-Residence with Wunderkind and has spent time working on the Boards of Sugarfina and Delta Dental. She holds a JD from Loyola Law School and a BA from the University of California, LA. Ms. Grayson said, "I am truly honored to join the Board of Directors at Spark and work alongside such a diverse group of innovative thinkers. Now is an exciting time for the Company as our niche brands have sparked millions of connections. I believe that our commitment to new product development and expansion will allow us to have an even greater impact on the future. I look forward to continuing to build on our successes while capturing additional market share and enhancing overall shareholder value." Eric Eichmann has been working at Spark Network since November 2019 as CEO. During the period of 2013 to 2018, he was a member of the management of Criteo S.A., where he also acquired the position of CEO in 2015. Before joining Criteo, Eichmann was working at Living Social as COO and at Rosetta Stone, also COO. He has a Master's degree in computer engineering from EPFL (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University.

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