The first thing to recognise was that it was a big decision for the Cohesion management team. What would our customers think? What would the wider Drupal community think? What effect would it have on our team?
We've been working with Acquia on projects for over a year. During that time, we have not only gotten to know each other well, but it also became clear that Cohesion DX8 could add tremendous value to the majority of Acquia's customers. Towards the end of last year, we started exploring what a joint future could look like.
When we boiled it down there were four key areas that really mattered:
Vision – Did we share the same vision?
As we got to know each other, it was clear that both companies had similar visions. While Acquia’s, with their scale and product range, may have been much wider in scope both companies essentially believe there is a better way of designing, building and managing digital experiences. We also both believe that low code and no code has a big role to play in that future, something Dries has highlighted on several occasions.
Both companies have set out to make it easier for customers to do the things they want to do. It should not be difficult to set up hosting, to build your web pages, introduce personalisation or edit your content.
Customers – Would this be in the best interest of our customer?
This was critical. The customers who adopted Cohesion DX8 when we first launched placed their trust in us to deliver when others had doubts. Without them we would not be where we are today and we wanted to make sure they would benefit from any change. We are convinced they will.
We also listened to what our customers wanted and one of the key requests was the desire for a single point of contact to manage their Drupal technology stack. They didn’t want to have to decide who to call when they needed something. Our larger customers also wanted global support and professional services to help on implementation. All things that we would have needed to build.
By joining Acquia, these problems are solved in one go (with a little allowance for time as we go through the integration!). We can now tap into Acquia’s world class infrastructure and more importantly so can our customers.
Growth – Would it help Cohesion to grow in the way that we wanted?
The Cohesion founders have spent five years, including the Drupal 7 MVP, working on Cohesion DX8. Over that time we have learned a lot about what people want from their content management platform and how people use these tools in the real world. Refining the user experience on each new version was a real focus, especially for less technical roles such as marketers, content editors and designers.
The result is that the team really believes that we have created something special and now they want to see it adopted across the industry.
We felt that the support of Acquia was the best way of achieving this. Acquia has over 4,000 customers, many of whom would benefit from using Cohesion DX8 as part of their Drupal based technology stack.
They also have some of the most experienced solution architects in the industry solving some of the most complex challenges in Drupal, an established customer service organization, a global sales team and much more. Tapping into this infrastructure and expertise would allow us to grow much faster and deliver more value to our customers.
People – Would this be good for the teams involved?
This last point has two sides to it. First, was this good for the Cohesion team who have worked so hard at delivering a game-changing product? We believe it will be, with more opportunity to grow in a much bigger, more connected organisation.
We have also had the pleasure of working with many Acquians over the last year. Acquia is full of talented people who very much shared our mindset and our vision. We genuinely think that 1 + 1 will equal 3 as the combined teams start working more closely together.
The future for Cohesion
We don’t yet have all the answers to what the future will look like but those of you who know us and know the value that Cohesion DX8 delivers understand how committed we are to building a world class product that enables our customers to do more.
We’re excited by what we see as an opportunity to build the best site building experience available anywhere, on any platform.
As we start working with the Acquia team to integrate Cohesion DX8 into their business we’ll have more updates, which we will of course share.
As always, the Cohesion team is available to talk to anyone personally who wants to know more. You can also review our FAQ to find out more about the acquisition.