Liquid Web announced today via the iThemes blog that it acquired The Events Calendar from Modern Tribe. The acquisition gives them ownership of the plugin, its suite of event-related plugins, and the team behind it all.
“We’ve acquired all the associated plugins, including Event Tickets, etc.,” said Matt Danner, the COO at iThemes. “They identify under the single umbrella of The Events Calendar as a team, so we’ve continued to position the team that way.”
As part of the acquisition, the 50+ employees from The Events Calendar plugin team are now a part of the Liquid Web family. They will continue working on the plugin and its related products. Zach Tirrell announced on The Events Calendar blog that he would remain at the helm and that the team structure was not changing.
The remaining 74 employees of Modern Tribe will continue working on the agency’s other projects, including clients like Microsoft and Harvard University. Reid Peifer, the Creative Director at Modern Tribe, teased potential future projects in his announcement post. “We can’t help but make things, so you may see a few surprises from us in the coming months as well.”
The Events Calendar plugin on WordPress.org currently has over 800,000 active installs with an average rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars. Modern Tribe launched the plugin in 2011 and has continued to build a larger product line and customer base around it over the last decade.
For existing customers, it should be business as usual. Nothing has changed about who is currently developing The Events Calendar. The website is still a separate entity, and billing will remain the same.
The acquisition is mere months after iThemes, owned by Liquid Web, purchased Restrict Content Pro (RCP), a membership plugin. While RCP continues to have an independent site, users can snag it with one of the plugin bundles directly from the iThemes website.
However, The Events Calendar will be wholly independent of iThemes. Customers hoping to see a similar bundle with The Events Calendar will be out of luck.
“The RCP acquisition was done under the iThemes brand,” said Danner. “We brought that team into our team, and the membership product is a key part of how we’re positioning iThemes. The Event Calendar’s acquisition was done under the larger Liquid Web brand. Their team is coming into Liquid Web alongside iThemes as part of the bigger software division. While we definitely think there are future opportunities to collaborate between our teams (which could include bundles of products from both teams), their products are not going to become part of the iThemes product line.”
One of the biggest remaining questions is whether the separate teams will eventually create integrations between The Events Calendar and RCP. There are multiple reasons event organizers might want to restrict content based on memberships, especially when it comes to virtual events. Danner did not give up any specific plans in his response.
“We’re very excited to explore all the opportunities to integrate our products,” he said. “I think there are some great opportunities for RCP and TEC to work more closely together, and both customer bases have requested deeper integration between the two. This acquisition was a perfect fit from so many angles. The people, the values of the team, and the products all align with what we’re building at Liquid Web.”
Staggering really how bad the various WordPress events plugins are. I use the events calendar only because the alternatives are worse.