Automattic, a company which is both one of the larger blog hosting companies as well as the lead developer on the WordPress platform, is reportedly currently working to raise between $100 million and $150 million in new capital.
Automattic has declined to comment on the story, which was originally reported by Fortune. If this story is true then the company will be valued at over $1 billion.
WordPress now powers 22% of the world's websites, up from 19% last July, and Automattic hosts some of the larger blogs out there. In addition to the freemium service at WordPress.com, Automattic also has a premium service called WordPress VIP, which offers a layer of services on top of WordPress.
Automattic was last in the news last week when they acquired Longreads, but that's not the only well-known service they own. Automattic also owns Akismet (spam), Polldaddy, Intense Debate (comment management), VaultPress, Cloudup, and more.
While some of my readers may have known that all of those services are owned by Automattic, I confess that I did not. These are all names that I had heard of but had not realized were part of Automattic, and that changes how I see the company.
Fortune speculated that Automattic will use the funds to fight off Medium, a newer and faster growing platform,but given how many different services Automattic offers I don't think Medium is much of a threat. The latter startup does not operate on the same scale or breadth as Automattic.