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Belfast - An internet dating site which links wealthy men with young women - and boasts an MP as a so-called “sugar daddy” member - has been launched in the UK.

Brandon Wade, who is the founder of the website, called, says the US site has 80,000 UK members. The site claims a million members in America, with 10 women - called “sugar babies” - to each man. It matches impoverished young women with older men who can “treat” them by buying presents.

“About 40 percent of the sugar babies are students who need help with their tuition fees,” Mr Wade said.”The next largest group is single mothers.

“The site is a reflection of the ills of our time ... If it's exploitative then the exploitation is mutual.

“I get asked a lot if it's prostitution. But the sugar babies can say no.”

He said most dating sites are superficial and his site is no different.

He said most of the UK membership is presently based in London.

The 'sugar daddies' are chiefly bankers, entrepreneurs and chief executives in their early 40s with an average income of £170,000 a year.

They spend £2,862 a year on “sugar addiction” and are 13 years older than the women - but there are also younger heirs to fortunes and one Member of Parliament, he added.

Siobhan Freegard, the founder of netmums, feared the new site might blur the line between prostitution and genuine relationships.

“The problem with a site like this is that the power balance is skewed from the start,” she said. - Belfast Telegraph