FriendFinder’s Latest Scandal Sexier When Compared To a Penthouse Letter

A porn star draping boobs over a worker’s head. Lapdances in the ongoing business dime. $50 million in straight straight back taxes. These are merely a number of the costs Penthouse publisher FriendFinder Networks is dealing with from an ex-employee.

Natalie Cedeno, the business’s former HR director, says that ongoing company professionals retaliated against her for pointing out violations of work guidelines. She ended up being an executive that is top the world wide web part associated with the company, profoundly involved with its operations for eight years, before FriendFinder fired her without cause in January, she states. She claims the organization then attempted to withhold the 2 several years of pay she ended up being owed under her agreement unless she consented to remain quiet about FriendFinder’s misdeeds a move her attorney characterizes as “extortion.” Cedeno intends to register complaints aided by the Equal Employment chance Commission and California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing the following month.

And a complaint that is juicy will likely be. FriendFinder Networks had previously been called Penthouse Media Group before it acquired Various Inc., the operator of Adult FriendFinder along with other online personals internet internet sites, in 2007 for $500 million. The office cultures of Florida-based Penthouse and Silicon Valley-based Various Inc while they’re both porn companies. where Cedeno worked ahead of the merger could not have already been more various. That became apparent may 2, 2008, as soon as the ex-Penthouse professionals, now in control of the combined company, made a decision to deliver in a passel of Penthouse Pets into the old different workplaces.

Whenever administration announced that the venerable magazine that is porn stable of nude models will be stopping by the workplace to provide frozen dessert, one female worker objected, as Cedeno informs the storyline. If they arrived, among the scantily clad Pets produced beeline for the dissenter. “They arrived to her office and put her breasts on her behalf mind so as to humiliate her, and additionally they had somebody prepared to just take images,” Cedeno claims. The employee stop immediately after the event.

The night before Cedeno had been terminated final month, she claims she raised at a gathering of professionals a worker who’d charged 1000s of dollars in lapdances towards the business a cost the business’s pre-Penthouse administration would not have tolerated. “The president laughed and stated the CEO had covered lapdances for investment bankers with business cash weekend that is last” Cedeno says.

But wait a moment: are not we referring to an organization whoever main item is porn? Exactly what are a workplace that is few at a company helping to make cash away from nude women? Well, there is significantly more than Cedeno’s pay at risk. FriendFinder filed to get general public year that is last. It desperately requires the $460 million it hopes to boost in an IPO so that you can lower $420 million with debt. If the business has appropriate dilemmas and work dilemmas beyond just what it disclosed in its SEC filings, its professionals could face hefty charges, plus the IPO may likely be scotched.

Penthouse Porn IPO to Pay for Adult FriendFinder Founder’s Vehicle

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Andrew Conru, a geeky engineer that is mechanical porn baron who founded one of many Internet’s

FriendFinder Networks CEO Marc Bell didn’t get back a note kept comment that is requesting Cedeno’s allegations. The SEC limits exactly exactly what businesses in enrollment for an IPO can state publicly about their company away from regulatory filings, a necessity referred to as “quiet period.”

Based on Cedeno, Various operated Adult FriendFinder as well as other X-rated adult web sites for seven years without drawing an individual sexual-harassment lawsuit from workers. The organization had been because buttoned-down as nearby NASA contractors. Office rules limited employees from publishing any pictures on workplace walls, as well as having screensavers that are naughty. Cedeno claims the company’s longtime postman had to inquire of her, after six many years of delivering mail, exactly just exactly what the ongoing company really did. And founder Andrew Conru, whom took no investment capital and so owned almost all for the ongoing business, is famously mild-mannered. (The raciest he gets: He when told a mag he’d possessed a mnage- -trois.)

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Valleywag had formerly heard rumblings of discontent during the business. A Penthouse executive who was COO of the company, reportedly prompted a mutiny among the Sunnyvale employees by trying (and failing) to replace most of the operations team over the summer, Anthony Previte. We additionally been aware of a messy shooting into the product sales division. But which was simply the end regarding the iceberg, relating to Cedeno.

FriendFinder Networks IPO delayed as designers mutiny

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What’s happening over at FriendFinder Networks, ne Penthouse Media Group? Evidently the

Every thing changed after Penthouse purchased the business and changed its title to FriendFinder Networks, she states. Within one month, FriendFinder had its first work grievance, and very quickly received two more. The business’s previous controller intends to register an age-discrimination lawsuit, Cedeno claims.

Cedeno claims brand new administration ended up being unresponsive to her issues. Her, “This trash prevents now. whenever she revealed violations of overtime legislation, the business’s VP of operations emailed” (He suggested her complaints, maybe maybe maybe not the violations.) She claims she ended up being purchased to lie and blame pay discrepancies regarding the business’s outside payroll merchant. She declined.

She additionally states that in January 2008, Rob Brackett, president of this organization’s online team, told her that CEO Marc Bell had reported to him in December the very first day he arrived to consult with Penthouse’s brand brand new purchase that the ladies in FriendFinder’s technology division had been “ugly” and that Cedeno should be rid of them and change all of them with more appealing employees to help keep the male workers pleased. Brackett squeezed Cedeno, asking her just exactly exactly how she would definitely satisfy Bell. She declined the demand.

The business has admitted with its S-1 filings that it neglected to gather fees owed on Web bought within the eu for decades. It offers currently charged $64 million contrary to the purchase cost of different. (It now states the purchase as costing the organization $401 million, down from $500 million, compliment of this as well as other fees.) However it has not yet disclosed the extent that is full of pending taxation bills. Cedeno claims the trunk fees in Germany alone arrived at $40 million and also the business owes ten dollars million an additional European nation.

FriendFinder appears to have produced solid enemy. Cedeno has employed Amanda Metcalf, a previous prosecutor now in personal practice whom’s most widely known for her part in a lawsuit against Death Row Records. We asked” alt=”whatsyourprice Log in”> Metcalf why she took in Cedeno’s instance. “Woman done incorrect,” she responded. If Cedeno demonstrates her allegations in court, FriendFinder’s professionals will discover a difficult course: It really is a very important factor to benefit from ladies. It is another to make the most of them.