IT Chimes Blog

WordPress buys out visual editor Scroll Kit

The competition in website building industry is being consistently featured in the news lately, wherein many hot shots are raising some insane amounts of funding or buying out new firms. Everybody is in the news, including portable website builder Weebly, Squarespace, Brandcast and the most recent one being WordPress. As per a report by Venture Beat, WordPress has acquired Scroll Kit – a website builder and online visual editor for storytelling for an undisclosed amount.

WordPress buys out Scroll Kit - IT Chie

It must be noted that the new development comes after WordPress’ parent firm Automattic was rumored to have raised some $100 million through various funding sources. The rumors were live till the last week, only to be followed by the Scroll Kit acquisition. The news was put forth by Scroll Kit via an update on its official site. The update also said, “Unfortunately, Scroll Kit as you know it will be shut down.” Like I said before, the website making sector is getting more and more interesting each day, and many new players are getting traction over well established names.

WordPress isn’t the only with money stash

WordPress and Scroll Kit aren’t the only ones doing the rounds on web design and development news, Squarespace, a Content Management System (CMS) and site hosting service provider, has raised some $40 million in Series B funding from global growth investor General Atlantic. Interestingly, portable website builder Weebly and Brandcast raised $35 million and $1.5 million, respectively – all on the same day. It is as if acquisition and funding clouds are looming over most of the major players in this industry. Who knows what news might come from the house of Wix.

Coming back to WordPress, Scroll Kit muts have gotten in its radar when its cofounder designed a tutorial for people showing how to create their own version of the NY times’ hailed Snow Fall piece. It received widespread critical acclaim, won a Pulitzer and a Webby, and was even called “the future of online journalism.” Reportedly, the New York Times editors got the tutorial removed, but the incident gave a nice kick to Scroll Kit’s public image and boosted its popularity.

It was evident from the update that Scroll Kit were linked with WordPress from the beginning. A short excerpt from the update is given below.

“In a sense, this change feels like we’re coming full circle. For both of us, WordPress was our entrance into the web. Kate wrote her first HTML and CSS to modify a theme. Cody used WordPress to launch NYU Local. We’ve watched in admiration as WordPress has grown steadily over time. The team is only 250 people and yet powers 21 percent of the Web. It’s a huge percentage, but when you talk to Matt and the team, it’s clear that they are just getting started.”

WordPress buys out Scroll Kit - IT Chie

What happens of Scroll Kit and its users now?

Those users working on Scroll Kit can export their projects to WordPress over the next six months, after which would become “read only” and lose their editing ability. Further, the Scroll Kit visual editor would be shut down within 90 days. It is advisable to migrate your projects to WordPress as Scroll Kit’s would lose its support soon as well.

WordPress buys out Scroll Kit - IT Chie

As per reports, Scroll Kit’s creative and design team will be accommodated into WordPress’ product team. Kate Ray and Cody Brown had founded Scroll Kit about your years back in 2010 through seed funding of about $222,000. Kate and Cody’s team, will join WordPress, but its not yet known just what projects would they be working on.

Image source – scrollkit.com

Gaurav Sabharwal is the Business Head at IT Chimes. He is an avid blogger, and likes to pen his thoughts about building, managing and leading teams in IT, top-level decision making and time management. Find him on Twitter @GauravSabh

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