Automattic chief and WordPress creator Matt Mullenweg announced the deal today, but declined to share the terms of the deal. Here’s what we know: WooCommerce’s 55 employees are joining Automattic, WooCommerce is currently profitable, and there are no plans (yet) for WooCommerce’s plug-and-play e-commerce service to land on the for-profit WordPress.com.
It’s noteworthy that WooCommerce competes with e-commerce platforms like Shopify (which is going public) and Squarespace.
We spoke to Mullenweg about the deal this morning, one month before his company turns 10 [the interview was abridged by us for readability’s sake]:
VentureBeat: Will any of this tech make it into WordPress.org?
Mullenweg: It’s actually exclusively there. It’s already open source GPL. We don’t have plans currently for it to make it to WordPress.com
VB: Really? I had assumed it would be automatically built into WordPress.com.
Mullenweg: I think it’s a little bit further down the line. There’s a lot to do with the plugin already.
VB: What about Squarespace? Does this acquisition make you more competitive?
Mullenweg: Absolutely. I would like to think everything we do makes us more competitive. If you look at the data, people are still using WordPress over Squarespace.
We’ve been thinking about this for a really long time — the best way to bring e-commerce to the WordPress world…
VB: Automattic turns ten next month — what’s next?
Mullenweg: We’ll talk about that soon. We’re really focused on Woo today. We have two major lines: WordPress.com, Jetpack, and this is adding a third. It’s far and away our biggest acquisition. It’s six times larger than anything we’ve done before.
VB: This deal seems to be about making WordPress a one-click tool.
Mullenweg: It’s definitely not easy to do. We have teams inside Automattic working on it. The challenge is bringing it to a wider audience. Things like e-commerce definitely bring us closer … it’s thousands and thousands of small improvements every day.