Vancouver startups receive millions from PlentyOfFish CEO

Grouplend CEO Kevin Sandhu

Plus, Vancouver Island gets an LNG deal and Eldorado Gold slips in Greece

A little help from a big fish
Markus Frind, who scored US$575 million from the sale of his online dating site PlentyOfFish to U.S. competitor IAC/InterActiveCorp. in July, has plunged back into local online startups, this time as an investor. Frind has reportedly invested $9 million in Grouplend, an online lender launched last fall by former Vancouver investment banking analyst Kevin Sandhu, and $18 million in Vancouver-based online furniture retailer Cymax Stores Inc. Last March, PlentyOfFish revealed it had 100 million users worldwide and that its run rate for 2015 was expected to hit, get this, $100 million as well. (via Globe and Mail)

Island LNG
Tomorrow the Malahat Nation and Steelhead LNG will announce a new Vancouver Island LNG project. In July, the Malahat, a 300-member First Nations community beside Mill Bay north of Victoria, more than tripled its lands by purchasing neighbouring Bamberton, approximately 525 hectares in size. Steelhead LNG is a Vancouver-based energy company focused on LNG project development in B.C. It is also working with the Huu-ay-aht First Nation on a proposed LNG project at Sarita Bay on Vancouver Island. Steelhead CEO Nigel Kuzemko, Acting Malahat Nation Chief Tommy Harry and Malahat Nation CEO Lawrence Lewis will be at tomorrow’s announcement.

Gold dust-up
Stock prices for Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold dropped about eight per cent today as the Greek government suspended its mining operations there due to an alleged contract violation. The $1-billion project in northern Greece includes gold mines already in operation and two factories under construction for processing gold and other minerals in Greece instead of overseas. Many local residents oppose the project for environmental reasons. (via Reuters, Globe and Mail)