giraffe with a funny facial expression
Open source CMS projects can stand tall: 2017 is off to a good start. PHOTO: Christine Sponchia

Open source CMS projects hit the ground running in January, barely pausing after the end-of-the-year break.

A Forrester web content management Wave was released, summits were held and words of digital war were declared. 

If you missed out on any of last month’s action, here are the latest open source CMS headlines.

Hippo

The latest Forrester Wave WCM report ensured January was a big month for Hippo, a BloomReach company, which was promoted to the “Strong Performer” category.

Hippo’s rapid rise through the ranks is well worth discussing. 

Throughout 2014, Hippo was nowhere to be seen on any Forrester Wave. A year later, it debuted in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant as a “Niche Player” before being bumped up to “Visionary” status in 2016.

Today, Forrester places Hippo comfortably alongside the industry’s most revered names.

DNN

The DNN Summit was held in Denver from Jan. 18 to 23. Hundreds of DNN users attended the event, which is managed by volunteers in the DNN community.

The keynotes were delivered by Scott Hanselman, the principal program manager at Microsoft for Azure, ASP.NET and Web Tools. He discussed the latest trends in web development, and what those trends mean for the future of DNN and other technologies.

The four-day summit consisted of a code-a-thon, an after party and even a skiing session. All presentations were recorded and are available to view online.

Magento

Just days into the new year, Magento announced that it had secured a gargantuan investment of $250 million from Hillhouse Capital. The funding is to be spent on growth, marketing, client support, new product innovation, worldwide expansion of sales and future acquisitions.

Beijing-based Hillhouse — which controls over $20 billion in assets — said in a statement that it sees tremendous growth opportunities for Magento, specifically in Asia. 

Magento was created in 2001 by Culver City, Calif.-based Varien, which published the first general-availability release of the Magento platform in 2008 and then rebranded under the Magento name in 2010. EBay acquired Magento in 2011 and then sold it in a strategic realignment in 2015 to a consortium of private equity investors including Permira Funds and Sterling Partners. London-based Permira subsequently spun out assets it attained in the acquisition into Magento Commerce, an independent company centered around the Magento platform.

OroCommerce

OroCommerce, the newest ecommerce solution on the scene, made an exciting start to 2017 by releasing OroCommerce 1.0. Aimed squarely at the B2B market, the platform boasts features like corporate accounts and a robust workflow engine.

But that’s not all. As Magento celebrated its funding success, its former CTO and co-founder Yoav Kutner (now the CEO of Oro Inc.) branded Magento’s B2B offering as “subpar”.

He told CMS Wire that, “[Magento’s B2B offering] wasn't purpose-built, from the ground up, for the way companies sell to and buy from each other.”

That sounds like fighting talk to me.

Other Open Source Headlines

Hippo wasn’t the only open source platform featured in the Forrester Wave WCM report. Drupal-powered Acquia retained its “Leader” status, while both Jahia and Magnolia were placed on the fringes of the “Challenger” segment. Magnolia also announced a new Elasticsearch interface during the course of the month.

Concrete5 8.1 was also released with a small set of new features and a whole lot of behavioral improvements.

Finally, Joomla 3.7 took one step closer to being released, as Joomla rolled out 3.7 Alpha 2.

2017 is Already Making Waves

We’re only one month into 2017, yet the latest Forrester Wave WCM report has given us much to discuss, particularly in the case of Hippo.

Furthermore, the release of OroCommerce 1.0 — accompanied by Yoav Kutner throwing down the gauntlet in the direction of Magento — means we have a new corner of the open source eCommerce market to keep tabs on.

That’s not a bad way to start the year, but I suspect the world of open source CMS is just getting started.