A billboard with a message so controversial it was twice removed in the city of Chicago is now appearing in Los Angeles.
“Need a Summer Job? Date a SUGAR DADDY,” reads the billboard erected just blocks from the campus of UCLA by ArrangementFinders.com, an online matchmaking service that “connects men and women looking for mutually beneficial arrangements,” according to its website.
The billboard, which features an image of former porn star and Charlie Sheen “goddess” Bree Olson applying makeup, was placed close to the UCLA campus for a very specific reason, according to ArrangementFinders.com’s marketing director.
“We wanted to target Los Angeles in general but, more importantly, girls graduating or looking for summer jobs to make some additional money in a short time frame,” AJ Perkins told ABCNews.com. “Los Angeles is really known for that lifestyle, for sugar daddies.”
ArrangementFinders.com, which has 2.1 million members, targets men and women in the 18-to-35 age range looking for an “alternative to traditional dating.” Men pay a monthly fee of $49 to $79 that allows them to connect with women, who join for free. The two can then meet off-line to determine what kind of “mutually beneficial relationship” they would like to have, according to Perkins.
“Prostitution or pay-for- sex is very transactional based,” he said in response to criticisms the site is a prostitution service in disguise. “This is more of an ongoing relationship that occurs between a man and a woman. It’s not like a one-night stand.”
The website, founded in 2010, drew controversy in Chicago in February when it placed a billboard identical to the one now in Los Angeles, as well as a second one that read, “Because the best job is a b**w job.”
At the time, Chicago was suffering from record unemployment levels, according to Perkins. In two separate instances, however, the landowner where the billboard was placed in Chicago forced the billboard company to remove the message.
“I said, Let’s do a different campaign entirely and that’s where this billboard came about,” Perkins said, referring to the Los Angeles billboard.
ArrangementFinders.com is owned by Avid Life Media, a Toronto-based company that also operates Ashley Madison, a dating website for married people.
Ashley Madison made headlines of its own earlier this week with a billboard featuring an image of current House of Representatives candidate and admitted philanderer Mark Sanford, reading, “Next time use… AshleyMadison.com to find your ‘running mate.”
The ArrangementFinders.com website will run in Los Angeles for one month and the company has purchased billboard space in Atlantic City that will run with the same message from around Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Perkins said the results of the billboard – 1,400 new female members in Los Angeles in 48 hours – speak for themselves.
“It does well for us so we’ll do it in every market that we can,” Perkins said. “It’s definitely speaking to an audience that wants the service.”
“It simply doesn’t cater to everybody but the 1,400 women who signed up, they’re obviously for it,” he said.