DevPress Sold To Unknown Buyer For $14k

The WordPress theme club known as DevPress has been sold to an unknown buyer for $14k. Launched in 2010, DevPress began as a WordPress collaboration project between Ptah Dunbar, Tung Do (aka Small Potato), Patrick Daly, and Justin Tadlock. Over the past four years, the company has experienced ups and downs. For example, in 2011, the company launched a theme and plugin review service that didn’t last long and was eventually phased out. In late 2011, Tung Do became the sole owner of DevPress.

The Front Page Of

Do cites financial and health issues as the primary reasons for selling the site.

For the past four years, through thick and thin, I did not want to sell this site. WordPress theme development is one of the few things I love, but I’ve not have had time to run this site properly and my wife has been sick for the past few months. I’ve already taken a loan 2 months ago, but her medical bills are stacking up. Obviously, I love my wife more so I’ve decided to sell.

This Isn’t The First WordPress Site Do Has Sold

Selling websites is not unfamiliar territory for Do. In 2008, he sold his popular site for $65k. Unfortunately, the result of that sale was a front page filled with webhosting affiliate links.

While the new owner of DevPress has yet to be named, Do says the new owner is someone he would trust to take over the site, “He is someone I would trust because he is competent in WordPress, is involved in giving back to the community, and has a more consistent track record than I do.” Do also said it will make sense when we find out who the new owner is. “When the deal is finished and you know who it is, it’ll make sense.”

Lessons Learned From Four Years Of Experience

I asked Do what lessons did he learn and what advice can he share from his four years working for DevPress. He said:

Innovation/bold-ideas doesn’t pay if you don’t succeed and patent it so focus on progress, consistency, and improving things most people find useful. Let others innovate and learn from their mistakes without having to pay the price yourself.

It’s unclear whether this is his last attempt to have a successful, sustainable, commercial theme business. After exchanging a few emails, I get the sense that he is changing his career path to go outside of WordPress. It’s unfortunate because I think he is one of the most talented designers within the WordPress community. I hope that he finds happiness and stability wherever his path leads him.

Who do you think the new owner of DevPress is? Let us know by leaving your best guess in the comments.


15 responses to “DevPress Sold To Unknown Buyer For $14k”

  1. I’ve gotta say, I’m surprised by the low BIN price. I didn’t even realize it was for sale until this post.

    The themes alone are worth it, let alone 4 years of history, existing traffic, revenue (albeit inconsistent), and site infrastructure already set up. Whoever the buyer is got a bargain of headstart in the WP theme industry.

    I’ve always been a big fan of Tung but he never really seemed to gain traction with DevPress like he did with WPDesigner, which at its peak, was an authority in the WP theme world.

    I guess you can chalk it up to saturation in the market, but the guy is an awesome designer and has a very unique voice, it’s just surprising he didn’t seem to stand out on more of a mass scale.

    Best of luck to him and his family, and I hope to see him back in the community one day.

    • DevPress had an identity crisis. At least with Tung at the helm, we was able to control the direction but a one man theme club just doesn’t work in the long run. Too much time spent doing other things instead of creating new products for people to buy. If he ever comes back, I hope he never gets involved with another theme club. Instead, I’d like to see him churn out some awesome designs within a talented team allowing him to focus on what he does best, design.

  2. Probably for the best. I bought the $5 membership originally on the reputation of the owners but DevPress could never figure out what it was — aside from the theme review service, there was also talk about being an app/widget store, being a news blog, being a social community, etc. It needed an actual business plan.

    • We definitely couldn’t figure out. That was our original issue. We had too many chiefs and not enough Indians, as they say. We wanted to be too many things at once, which was a major part of our downfall. Tung had a much better go at it alone. I still consider him one of the top designers in the WordPress world, and I’m pretty sure he’ll be around for years to come because I’ll drag him back kicking and screaming if I have to. :)


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