September 2021 WordPress News: Automattic Is Valued at $7.5 Billion + 5 More Updates

In September, the WordPress community celebrates WordPress Translation Day. The 2021 celebration marks the sixth anniversary of its inception. However, that’s not the only thing WordPress is celebrating right now.

From multiple acquisitions to the return of in-person WordCamps, September has been good to the WordPress community.

Read on to learn about:

Automattic Doubles Its Valuation From 2019

Jetpack Acquires Social Image Generator

Automattic Acquires Headless CMS Frontity

Honors WP Acquires Immerseus

WordPress Opens Applications for In-Person WordCamps

Classic Editor Functionality Extended

Final Thoughts: WordPress News: Automattic Valued at $7.5 Billion + 5 More | Sept. 2021

Automattic Doubles Its Valuation From 2019

It’s a big year for Automattic. Its CEO, Matt Mullenweg, announced that the company is now valued at $7.5 billion after buying back $250 million worth of shares from its current and former employees.

Automattic is now worth more than double its 2019 value when it raised $300 million at a $3 billion valuation.

Automattic also raised an additional $288 million in funding last February. Then, the company acquired Parse.ly, Day One, and Pocket Casts and invested in Element and Titan.

In an interview with Cheddar News’ Michelle Castillo, Mullenweg says he plans to use the funds to invest in WooCommerce. He also addressed speculation about Automattic’s IPO plans, saying it isn’t on their immediate radar yet.

Jetpack Acquires Social Image Generator

Jetpack acquires Social Image Generator
Image Source

Automattic-owned Jetpack acquired Social Image Generator, a commercial plugin that instantly creates social share images for WordPress from a set of customizable templates.

According to the announcement made on Jetpack’s blog, Daniel Post, the plugin’s creator, will be joining Automattic to continue developing the plugin and other social media tools.

Social Image Generator launched in Feb. 2021 and was offered at $39/year. It will soon be integrated as part of Jetpack’s social media automation suite.

Automattic Acquires Headless CMS Frontity

Automattic has acquired Frontity, a headless WordPress framework used for building themes with React.

According to the announcement on Frontity’s website, the acquisition will directly benefit WordPress as Frontity’s team will be focusing on helping it achieve its goal of improving Full Site Editing.

Automattic invested in Frontity in 2020 and began a working relationship with its founders Luis Herranz and Pablo Postigo. But the acquisition doesn’t mean the framework will be merged with WordPress anytime soon.

Honors WP Acquires Immerseus

Honors WP acquires e-learning company Immerseus

Easily Amused e-learning company Honors WP acquired Immerseus, a plugin company specializing in e-learning plugins for LearnDash.

Honors WP initially acquired seven of Immerseus’ plugins, but Immerseus founder Jack Kitterhing tweeted that Honors WP has now wholly acquired the company.

WordPress Opens Applications for In-Person WordCamps

WordPress is now accepting applications for in-person WordCamps, provided that the event meets the updated community guidelines for organizing an event during a pandemic. The announcement comes after deliberation that lasted more than six weeks.

The updated guidelines allow in-person WordCamps if local public health authorities permit in-person gatherings and the region passes the safety checklist.

However, if the area does not pass the list, it can still hold in-person WordCamps if COVID tests and vaccinations are available.

The WordPress community team expects in-person attendees to be responsible for their health and participate if they’ve been fully vaccinated, recovered from COVID within the last three months, or tested negative before attending.

Updated guidelines for in-person WordCamps
Image Source

WordCamp U.S., which will be held on Oct. 1, 2021, will still be a virtual affair.

Classic Editor Functionality Extended

The WordPress Classic Editor is here to stay until 2022.

Support for the Classic Editor was meant to cease in 2021, but according to an announcement from WordPress, the plugin will enjoy continued support “until the end of 2022 or as long as necessary.”

The Classic Editor was published to help the transition to the Gutenberg plugin. It currently has over five million users.

Final Thoughts: WordPress News: Automattic Valued at $7.5 Billion + 5 More | Sept. 2021

The WordPress community has a lot thankful for as it celebrates its sixth WordPress Translation Month this September.

From multiple acquisitions that further WordPress’ goal of moving toward Full Site Editing to the return of in-person WordCamps, there is still much more to look forward to before 2021 ends.

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Tiffani Anderson
Tiffani Anderson |

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