Former Tinder Exec Files Sexual Battery Lawsuit Against the Company, Former CEO
A woman who claims she was fired by Tinder after she came forward with allegations of sexual assault against the company's former CEO is now suing him and the company over the ordeal.
Rosette Pambakian, the former VP of marketing and communications at Tinder, initially made her complaint last year as part of a massive lawsuit against the company. She eventually withdrew as a plaintiff in the suit because of an arbitration agreement with the company.
But now Pambakian has filed a new lawsuit against IAC and the Match Group (the parent companies of Tinder) as well as former Tinder CEO Gregory Blatt.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Pambakian claims she was at the company's holiday party in December 2016 at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills. At the party, Pambakian claims that Blatt told her, "I get hard every time I look at you" and "Let's get out of here."
Finding his conduct to be "aggressive," she left the party with two friends and went upstairs to one of their hotel rooms.
Pambakian claims that Blatt began texting one of the other women around 2:00 AM and eventually showed up at the hotel room door. She claims that as soon as he walked in the room, Blatt climbed on top of Pambakian (who was sitting on the bed) and began "forcibly groping [Pambakian's] breasts and upper thighs, and kissing her shoulders, neck and chest."
She says she tried to defuse the situation by suggesting they all order food to the room. Pambakian claims that after the food was ordered, Blatt again pushed her "onto the bed and began groping her and attempting to kiss her."
Pambakian says she again rebuffed Blatt and told him to leave, which he eventually did.
After the alleged incident, Pambakian claims she told Sean Rad, former Tinder CEO and then-Tinder Chairman, about the alleged attack.
But Pambakian claims that a meaningful investigation was never conducted and the company "failed to interview a key witness" and "ignored damning facts" because they "did not want to risk their bottom line."
Eventually, Pambakian says she was placed on administrative leave and eventually wrongfully terminated.
She is suing for negligence, sexual battery, gender violence, wrongful termination and retaliation.
Pambakian is seeking unspecified damages.
A rep for Match said the company had not seen the lawsuit, so they could not comment. Instead, they passed along a letter that CEO Mandy Ginsberg sent to Pambakian months ago.
The letter said in part, "You were not terminated because you reported Greg for sexual harassment. You couldn’t have been, as you never reported Greg for sexual harassment. When Sean Rad brought the subject up nearly five months later, right after the valuation process commenced, it was immediately and thoroughly investigated by the Board, independently without any involvement from Greg, which concluded that no sexual harassment occurred. I was not the CEO at the time, but I know that you were interviewed on at least two separate occasions and you never alleged sexual harassment."