Who owns Ancestry.com

by / ⠀Who Owns / January 2, 2024
Who owns Ancestry.com

Who owns Ancestry.com? The website is owned by Blackstone, a leading global investment firm. Blackstone acquired a majority stake in Ancestry from Silver Lake, GIC, Spectrum Equity, and other existing investors in December 2020. As a result, Blackstone now holds the primary ownership of Ancestry, which operates as a private company that specializes in family history research and genealogical services.

Company History

Ancestry.com is an online genealogy platform that helps individuals explore their family history and heritage. With its headquarters in Lehi, Utah, USA, the company has gone through various ownership changes over the years.

  1. Founded in 1983 by John Sittner, Ancestry.com began as a publishing company named Ancestry Publishing Company. It evolved from providing family history-related magazines and books to launching its early genealogy database software, which marked the start of the company’s digital journey.
  2. In 1996, Ancestry.com went on to launch its official website and became one of the leading genealogy websites. This milestone laid the foundation for the company’s subsequent growth and brought forth investors like Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft.
  3. In 2007, Spectrum Equity Investors, a private equity firm, bought a majority stake in Ancestry.com for around $300 million. The company went public in 2009, with its shares trading on NASDAQ under the ticker ACOM.
  4. In 2012, Ancestry.com was acquired by a European private equity company called Permira Advisers for $1.6 billion. This acquisition turned Ancestry.com into a privately held company, and its stock was delisted from NASDAQ.
  5. Later in 2016, Silver Lake, a private equity firm, and GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, invested in the company, becoming significant stakeholders.
  6. In 2020, Blackstone Group, a multinational private equity firm, announced its decision to acquire a majority stake in Ancestry.com for $4.7 billion, taking over from the previous investors – Silver Lake, GIC, and others. Currently, Blackstone Group is the majority owner of Ancestry.com. In conclusion, the ownership of Ancestry.com has evolved significantly since its inception.
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Today, the majority owner of Ancestry.com is the Blackstone Group, after having acquired its majority stake in 2020.

Who was the founder?

Ancestry.com was originally founded as Infobases by Paul Brent Allen and Dan Taggart in 1983. Paul Brent Allen is a computer programmer and entrepreneur from Salt Lake City, Utah. He graduated from Brigham Young University in 1984, where he studied computer science.

Allen worked on several projects at Brigham Young University involving genealogy data and noticed the growing demand for family history information. Infobases initially focused on providing a platform for digitizing and distributing content on electronic media such as floppy disks. In 1987, they began working on creating databases focused on genealogy, which eventually led to the launch of Ancestry.com in 1996.

The company later changed its name and eventually became known as The Generations Network in 2007. It was then sold to Permira, a European private equity firm, in 2012 and has been owned by various investment firms since then. As the co-founder of Ancestry.com, Paul Brent Allen played a significant role in the development and popularization of genealogy research through the use of technology.

In addition to his work with Ancestry.com, Allen has been involved in various technology and internet ventures over his career, including founding MyFamily.com, 10x Marketing, Provo Labs, and FamilyLink.com. He has also served as a mentor and advisor to many startups and entrepreneurs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Who owns Ancestry.com?

Ancestry.com is currently owned by Blackstone, a private equity firm that acquired a majority stake in the company in 2020.

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When was Ancestry.com founded?

Ancestry.com was founded in 1983 as Ancestry Publishing, later transitioning into an online business in 1996 and officially becoming Ancestry.com.

What subscription plans does Ancestry.com offer?

Ancestry.com offers several subscription plans, including U.S. Discovery, which covers U.S. records, World Explorer, which covers global records, and All Access, which provides access to all available records, as well as newspapers and Fold3 military records.

Can I cancel my Ancestry.com subscription at any time?

Yes, you can cancel your Ancestry.com subscription at any time by visiting your account settings. You will continue to have access to the subscription until the end of your current billing period.

How do I contact Ancestry.com customer support?

You can contact Ancestry.com customer support by visiting their support page on their website and clicking on the “Contact Us” link. Alternatively, you can call them at 1-800-ANCESTRY (1-800-262-3787) for assistance.

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Featured image provided by Mehmet Turgut Kirkgoz; Pexels; Thanks!

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