GoDaddy acquires Elto to create a marketplace for WordPress professionals
GoDaddy has acquired Elto to create a marketplace for WordPress professionals. Elto shut down late last year to re-think their strategy, and today it was reported by TechCrunch that they are joining GoDaddy to better execute their vision.
The company's two founders are joining GoDaddy. TechCrunch notes they were a team of ten at the peak, but I doubt many (if any) carried through the temporary shutdown.
The acquisition aligns with GoDaddy's strategy to create a number of tools and services for their enormous customer base.
Elto had a customer base of 25,000, and a nice four letter domain it appears they're keeping. Terms for the deal weren't disclosed, but I presume GoDaddy had to at least spend enough so that Elto could pay back investors the half a million or so in funding they'd received.
A marketplace of freelancers certainly makes sense for GoDaddy; it's an in-house place they can point support customers when their needs are greater than the support team should be handling. And I presume they'll be able to adopt a good bit of Elto's existing marketplace technology.
That said, they're competing with Codeable, Microlancer (by Envato), and Mojo Marketplace's Services (by hosting giant EIG). The competition — and presumably that competition will extend to both prices to customers and payouts to freelancers — is going to be heated, likely driving margins down.
Elto is specifically joining the GoDaddy Pro program:
The Elto team joins GoDaddy Pro, a brand new program (now in beta) that was developed to specifically serve web professionals and their needs. The program’s mission is to help web pros make more money online, save time, and exceed client expectations. GoDaddy has created an entirely new set of technology, programs and support especially for web designers and developers who use WordPress and other technologies.
You should probably get used to the phrase “acquired by GoDaddy.” They are making a huge push into the WordPress economy, and they are willing to invest a lot of money while they do it.