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Like most of his advertising deals, this one found Frind.He hadn't even heard of Video Egg until a week ago. with more than that." Five years ago, he started Plenty of Fish with no money, no plan, and scant knowledge of how to build a Web business. Its traffic is four times that of dating pioneer Match, which has annual revenue of 0 million and a staff that numbers in the hundreds. Today, he employs just three customer service workers, who check for spam and delete nude images from the Plenty of Fish website while Frind handles everything else.He always says exactly what he thinks."With friends and family, Frind expresses affection through playful pranks.Frind will spend hours hiding in the three-bedroom apartment he and Kanciar share, furtively flipping light switches, tapping on doors, and ducking into rooms to play on his girlfriend's fear of ghosts.Frind's parents, German farmers who emigrated just before his fourth birthday, bought a 1,200-acre plot 10 miles from town and initially lived in a trailer without electricity, phones, or running water.The family's closest neighbors were a mile and a half away, and, apart from a younger brother, Frind had few friends.
While he is doing this, he carps about Canada's high income taxes, a serious problem considering that Plenty of Fish is on track to book revenue of million for 2008, with profit margins in excess of 50 percent. "Most of the time, I just sit on my ass and watch it." There's so little to do that he and his girlfriend, Annie Kanciar, spent the better part of last summer sunning themselves on the French Riviera.In most stories, this is where the hard work begins -- the long hours, sleepless nights, and near-death business experiences. Frind takes it easy, working no more than 20 hours a week during the busiest times and usually no more than 10.Five years later, he is running one of the largest websites on the planet and paying himself more than million a year.Another memorable valentine involved the secret consumption of a massive quantity of hot peppers.Though his mouth was on fire, Frind calmly planted a kiss on Kanciar's lips and feigned ignorance as she went scrambling for water.
But then, you tend to attract advertisers' attention when you are serving up 1.6 billion webpages each month.. Today, according to the research firm Hitwise, his creation is the largest dating website in the U. Amazingly, Frind has set up his company so that doing everything else amounts to doing almost nothing at all.