A $1 billion dollar step in the direction of open source awareness and a great opportunity to open doors for other open source software.
As big fans of the open source movement, we were very enthused to hear that MySQL was recently picked up by Sun Microsystems. As defined by Wikipedia, the basic program runs as a server providing multi-user access to a number of databases and was previously owned and sponsored by a single for-profit firm, the Swedish company MySQL AB. The project’s source code is available under terms of the GNU General Public License, as well as under a variety of proprietary agreements.
This type of program goes hand in hand with other open source content management systems such as WordPress (who recently acquired $29 million in funding) and encourages other open source projects such as the wildly popular Openads (who also recently acquired $5 million in funding).
According to the press release, Sun Microsystems, Inc. announced that it has “entered into a definitive agreement to acquire MySQL AB, an open source icon and developer of one of the world’s fastest growing open source databases for approximately $1 billion in total consideration.”
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They also say that “MySQL will bring synergies to Sun that will change the landscape of the software industry by driving new adoption of MySQL’s open source database in more traditional applications and enterprises. The integration with Sun will greatly extend the commercial appeal of MySQL’s offerings and improve its value proposition with the addition of Sun’s global services organization. MySQL will also gain new distribution through Sun’s channels including its OEM relationships with Intel, IBM and Dell.” This deal is said to be final by the end of June 30th, 2008.
According to TechCrunch, Sun Microsystems has acquired them for $1 billion. MySQL had raised a total of $39 million from Benchmark, Index, IVP, Intel, and SAP in the past and claims a 25% share of the database market.
Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz wrote in his blog: “MySQL is by far the most popular platform on which modern developers are creating network services. From Facebook, Google and Sina.com to banks and telecommunications companies, architects looking for performance, productivity and innovation have turned to MySQL. In high schools and college campuses, at startups, at high performance computing labs and in the Global 2000. The adoption of MySQL across the globe is nothing short of breathtaking. They are the root stock from which an enormous portion of the web economy springs.”
Much like the recent funding of WordPress’ Automattic, this is one more step in the direction of free media where publishers and developers can work together to create brilliant free content while spending much less to make it happen.