Pornhub is being acquired by Canadian private equity firm Ethical Capital Partners for an undisclosed sum

Pornhub’s owners will cash in on the sale of parent company MindGeek to Canadian private equity firm Ethical Capital Partners for an undisclosed sum.

The company, which claims to specialize in tech opportunities that “require ethical leadership,” announced the acquisition yesterday on its website.

ECP says they plan to use their experience to build MindGeek as they fight illegal content online and ensure ethical practices online.

The sale comes a day after the release of a hard-hitting Netflix documentary Money Shot: The Pornhub Story, which focuses on human trafficking and exploitation in the industry.

MindGeek, which owns a large portfolio of porn websites, said that with ECP’s backing it will “continue its research into and adoption of the latest and best available online safety protocols to ensure it remains a world-class leader in trust and security and its platforms. are inclusive, sex-positive spaces for adults.”

Artists, journalists and alleged victims spoke candidly about the new Netflix documentary

Former MindGeek CEO Feras Antoon

Former MindGeek COO David Tassillo

Former Chief Executive Officer Feras Antoon (left) and former Chief Operating Officer David Tassillo (right), who have resigned from MindGeek, the company best known for running Pornhub

Attention turned to Pornhub’s practices after journalist Nicholas Kristof a column in the New York Times titled “The Children on Pornhub,” detailing some stories from survivors of young people whose sexual abuse was uploaded to the website.

‘[The] site is full of rape videos. Money is being made from child rapes, revenge porn, spy cam videos of women showering, racist and misogynists, and images of women being suffocated in plastic bags,” Kristof wrote.

Pornhub then banned uploads from unauthenticated users.

Mastercard and Visa have discontinued their services to Pornhub in light of the report.

The top executives also resigned in 2022 after MindGeek was accused of hosting videos featuring non-consensual and underage sex.

CEO Feras Antoon and COO David Tassillo remained shareholders of the company after running it for more than a decade.

Antoon co-founded Brazzers in 2005 and joined Tassilo to buy MindGeek (then called Manwin) in 2012 from German businessman Fabian Thylmann.

Antoon and Tassillo denied that their company allowed explicit videos of minors and dissenting individuals to remain on their sites.

The company said at the time that MindGeek’s executive leadership team would continue to run the company on an interim basis while it searched for replacements.

It is not clear whether Antoon and Tassillo were still shareholders when MindGeek decided to sell to Ethical Capital Partners, the day after the release of the Netflix documentary was announced.

Documentary filmmaker Suzanne Hillinger collaborated with Kristof on the hour-and-a-half Money Shot exposé, released March 15, which examined allegations of sex trafficking and rape videos shared on the website.

Featuring interviews with artists, activists and former employees, the film claims to offer “a deep dive into Pornhub’s successes and scandals.”

Journalists, whistleblowers and victims of the alleged mismanagement of the site’s content speak candidly in the documentary.

Money Shot traces the website from its inception in 2007 to the present, highlighting the difficulty the site has had in protecting its creators.

New owners Ethical Capital Partners will hope to ensure high standards, ensure MindGeek’s platforms are at the forefront of innovation, trust and safety across the web, and continue to be home to an inclusive global community of adult creators, artists, artists and users seeking creative and sexual expression.’

A press release stated that ECP would invest in MindGeek as the Internet leader in the fight against illegal content online, focusing on “child protection, intimate image protection and digital self-determination.”

The documentary came out on March 15, a day before ECP announced the acquisition

The documentary came out on March 15, a day before ECP announced the acquisition

PayPal also shut down services to Pornhub in 2019, claiming that

PayPal also shut down services to Pornhub in 2019, claiming that “certain business payments” had been made through the site without PayPal’s consent. Exhausts claimed the payment platform had long discriminated against artists, claiming thousands would be harmed by it

In response to Kristof’s article, Pornhub said it is “irresponsible and blatantly false” to suggest that it allows child sexual abuse images on its site.

Pornhub added that it employs moderators to screen every upload and removes illegal material.

MailOnline reached out to Ethical Capital Partners for comment.


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