Meet the man cashing in on the economics of infidelity

Noel Biderman.
Noel Biderman.

FOR a committed married bloke with two kids, Noel Biderman wears his "King of Infidelity" crown with surprising ease.

Sex. Women. Adultery. Internet.

These are the ingredients catapulting Biderman and his company Avid Life Media into the online dating stratosphere.

Sure, chances are you've haven't heard of Biderman or his company, but sit down for a moment and think about the women in your life.

It's likely at least one of them is achieving sexual fulfilment - but not with their partner.

And that affair has probably come about because of this balding 44-year-old Jewish bloke from Canada.


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The economics of infidelity are paying off for Biderman, whose adultery hook-up site went live in 2001 and is now worth more than $160 million.

He is also the driving force behind three other less successful sites -, and

"Strip clubs, massage parlours and prostitution have all traditionally catered to men's desires to cheat," Biderman, who hopes to raise a cool $200 million by listing AshleyMadison shares on the London Stock Exchange, says.

"Up until the creation of, there wasn't really a place where women could go to pursue their desires to have an affair.

"Now that there is, it's clear that women aren't the more faithful sex - they just hadn't been offered the same opportunities to cheat in the past."

With more than 35.5 million members in 46 countries, Biderman's love child is considered one of the world's biggest dating sites.

About 1.165 million of its mostly female membership are from Australia and many are from regional, rural and remote communities.

"When the site first launched in Australia in 2010, most of our membership was concentrated around the major cities," Biderman tells APN Newsdesk before boarding a plane in Israel where he has been promoting the site.

"We have now noticed a trend that smaller towns and areas are growing at a much faster rate than the larger cities.

"Infidelity isn't just a big city issue and it isn't just a male activity."

Over the past 14 years, Biderman has made the sexual desires of women his number one priority, but there's nothing altruistic about his focus.

It's free to join AshleyMadison but if you want to hook up you're going to have to dig deep.

Expect to put aside at least $144 a year to contact likely partners.

Websites are offering people the chance to achieve sexual fulfilment.
Websites are offering people the chance to achieve sexual fulfilment. Noel Biderman


Pop cultural phenomena like the runaway success of E.L. James' book Fifty Shades of Grey are pushing more women online and Biderman says he knows why.

"We did see an increase in women joining around the Fifty Shades of Grey book and movie launches," he says.

"Although the book and the movie are not about having an affair, they are about the human need to explore a person's most intimate desires in order to have a more fulfilled life.

"I think many married women identified with this storyline as most of our female members have made many sacrifices for their husband, children, work and family."

With more than 300 adultery sites operating across the world, it's a crowded marketplace so understanding the female psyche is vital for Biderman to stay ahead of the pack.

"An affair can be their one chance for an escape from their daily responsibilities, to have something that is just for themselves," he says.

"Also, many women have said that they're not looking to divorce their husbands and that they choose to have affairs to regain the excitement and passion that's missing in their marriages."

Biderman is a walking irony.

He makes money from adulterers and believes he knows exactly what pushes women into the arms of other lovers.

Yet he has been married to his wife Amanda for about 12 years and they are happily raising a couple of children in their Toronto home.

"I believe monogamy is worth pursuing and that it's a worthwhile endeavour," Biderman told recently.

But when the monogamy boat gets rocky, Biderman believes seeking satisfaction in the arms of another lover will ultimately see couples sail on smooth water.

"People have affairs for a multitude of reasons. I don't think there's a one-size-fits-all approach to infidelity," he says.

"However, we most often hear from members that they seek out affairs, not because they don't love their spouse, but because their marriage lacks the intimacy and passion it once had.

"Members are not cheating on their spouse because they're looking for divorce, more often than not they're seeking out an affair to help keep their marriage together.

"Why ruin a marriage with a long history and possibly family ties just because needs aren't being met in one area?"

Topics:  affair cheating editors picks relationships

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