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Marriage cheating site woos Europe with IPO plans

A website that caters to adulterers says it's not finding enough love in North America for its initial public offering plans, so it's reaching out to Europe instead.

Canada-based Ashley Madison, which touts itself as "the world's leading married dating service for discreet encounters," is looking to raise up to $200 million dollars by floating its IPO in London later this year.

Parent company Avid Life Media, which also owns websites such as Cougarlife.com and EstablishedMen.com, failed at its first IPO attempt five years ago. But it's now looking across the Atlantic, where attitudes about marital infidelity are more relaxed.

"In Europe, we have simply got a more laissez faire attitude towards a business such as ours," Christoph Kraemer, the company's director of international relations told Reuters on Wednesday.

Avid Life claims that Ashley Madison is second only to Match.com in size among global online dating sites. Avid Life values itself at $1 billion, and reported $115 million in revenues last year, up 45 percent from 2013.

Kraemer told the wire service that Ashley Madison, which says it has 34 million members in dozens of countries, is preparing to launch in Russia, Ukraine and the Baltic states shortly. Membership has been growing rapidly in Asia. In Japan, Ashley Madison snagged 1 million members in less than nine months.

"Infidelity exists in every culture in the world," company founder Noel Biderman told the Telegraph last year. "There's no place you can point to on the planet where there is no unfaithfulness."

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