WordPress is suddenly big business

All Things Digital reported last week week that the company behind WordPress could generate almost $50 million in revenue this year.

If you blog at all, you know WordPress is a big deal, but fewer people are aware that there is a company behind the platform called Automattic. The public face of Automattic and WordPress is Matt Mullenweg.

Recently we published a story that WordPress was the platform of choice on 48 of the world's top 100 blogs. According to Mullenweg's "about" page on the Automattic site, it accounts for 15 percent of the world's websites.

The revenue projections are even more impressive when you consider WordPress software is open source, meaning anyone can download it and use it for free. So, how exactly are they going to generate tens of millions of dollars in revenue from a free software package?

According to the article on All Things Digital it's by selling a premium subscription service along with a VIP Publishing Platform, which powers some big brand sites including TED, CNN, Time, Dow Jones and UPS. 

Interesting enough, All Things Digital reports the company has been able to achieve this kind of growth using an open source platform with no formal office and just a couple of guys at the top. Today, they are adding executive talent and may even open an office soon.

But this shows that you can build a successful and profitable open source business by building enterprise-class services on top of the open source platform.

For more information:
- see the All Things Digital article

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