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Automattic acqui-hires the team behind Frontity, a React framework for WordPress

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WordPress.com father or mother corporate Automattic has obtained Frontity, an open supply React framework for WordPress-powered web sites. Frontity’s whole crew, which incorporates founders Pablo Postigo (CEO) and Luis Herranz (lead developer), will now sign up for Automattic to paintings at the WordPress open supply challenge, with a particular focal point on frontend building gear and bettering site efficiency.

“After a sequence of conversations, Automattic presented to sponsor our crew to paintings at the WordPress open supply challenge, and extra in particular, to lend a hand beef up the total web site modifying developer enjoy,” Postigo famous in a weblog submit. “We noticed this as an enormous alternative for our crew to make a extra vital have an effect on in the long run, and made up our minds to move for it.”

A WordPress international

Powering an estimated 40% of all web sites, WordPress wishes little creation. The omnipresent content material control machine (CMS) is to be had in two wide variations — the open supply, self-hosted incarnation to be had via WordPress.org, and the hosted entity operated and commercialized through Automattic via WordPress.com. The Frontity acquisition is all about Automattic making an investment assets within the former.

Based out Spain in 2015 first of all as Worona, Frontity has developed over the years to grow to be a framework that permits builders to leverage some great benefits of the React JavaScript library of their WordPress web sites. Frontity is all about eliminating the complexity of connecting WordPress and React, permitting builders to concentrate on core building wishes and developing fast-loading WordPress web sites, and spend much less time on configuration.  The Madrid-based corporate raised a €1 million ($1.2 million) seed spherical final yr, with Automattic as one of the crucial traders, and it later introduced a partnership with virtual company 10as much as open the Frontity Framework to the venture.

Whilst Automattic is basically related to the WordPress logo, the corporate has more and more focused companies over the years with a slew of latest gear and merchandise, whilst it has additionally engaged in quite a few acquisition and funding projects to diversify its scope. A few years again, Automattic secured $300 million from Salesforce, underscoring its intentions within the venture sphere, whilst it additionally obtained ZBS CRM, a buyer courting control plugin for WordPress, and ecommerce plugin WooCommerce. Previous this yr, Automattic’s enterprise-focused content material control offshoot WordPress VIP obtained engagement analytics platform Parse.ly, whilst Automattic additionally went directly to put money into industry e-mail startup Titan and decentralized crew messaging platform Component.

Remaining week, WordPress cocreator and Automattic founder Matt Mullenweg introduced that his corporate had quietly raised $288 million in financing again in February, serving now not best to fund its acquisitions, but in addition to spearhead a hiring spree.


Whilst the Frontity acquisition is possibly now not a natural venture play, it suits a broader pattern that has noticed companies embody a so-called “headless” structure, the place tool’s backend and frontend are decoupled for optimum freedom and versatility. For instance, Contentstack just lately raised $57.five million for an enterprise-focused CMS constructed for a extra trendy structure, founded round microservices, APIs, cloud, and “headless” — or MACH, for brief.

Underneath Automattic’s wing, Frontity stated that its crew’s wisdom of “frontend tooling, efficiency, and developer documentation” will get advantages the wider WordPress building international, and in combination they are going to “discover tactics to beef up the developer enjoy with blocks and issues” — that is in particular pertinent with the brand new WordPress Gutenberg editor.

Frontify’s present open supply framework will proceed in its present guise, however the crew is operating to transition the challenge to a brand new neighborhood of maintainers for the reason that Frontify’s builders will now be operating on new WordPress-focused duties. So in impact, this acquisition is extra of a skill snatch than the rest.

“By way of becoming a member of forces, we now have the risk to lend a hand beef up the enjoy for all builders who need to use WordPress, now not simply those that need to use it as a decoupled CMS,” Herranz stated. “We imagine this transfer isn’t just a large step ahead for our crew, but in addition for the WordPress ecosystem.”


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