Git the money

Github gets $100m from Andreessen Horowitz - what's in store?

GitHub, the “social network for developers”, has raised $100m in funding from rockstar angel investors Andreessen Horowitz, giving it a whopping market value of $750m. Could this be the year where Git finally knocks Subversion off its perch? This move suggest very possibly

Since its founding in 2008, the site has quickly become the de-facto place for developers to share open-source code, and“fork me on github” banners have become increasingly ubiquitous. Having quickly started making a profit soon after being established, however, GitHub has never needed to search for investment.

So what’s changed? According to a blog post by cofounder Tom Preston-Werner, the investment is more of a corporate team-up than a buy-out:

Over the past few months we've gotten to know Marc [Andreessen, of Andreessen Horowitz] and one of his partners, Peter Levine, and we really like them. We wish we could hire them both, but they already have jobs. So instead we're going to work with them through their firm.

Andreessen Horowitz is a venture capital company founded by Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, who have invested in some of the trendiest (and most successful) technology startups of the past few years, including Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Digg, Skype, Groupon, Instagram, Pinterest and Zynga.

However, Andreessen Horowitz’s $100m investment in GitHub is the largest the company has ever given out. From a certain perspective GitHub seems a strange property to choose to invest in: only four years old, with just over one million members and a limited niche audience. But it has also proven itself to be more than a flash-in-the-pan, and to have a sustainable business model already - more than which can be said about many other Andreessen Horowitz investments.

The big question is: what are GitHub planning on doing with all this cash? Expansion, says Preston-Werner:

We want GitHub to be even easier for beginners and more powerful for experts. We want GitHub everywhere—whether you use Windows or Mac or Linux or some futuristic computer phone that hasn't been invented yet—we want GitHub to be an awesome experience. We want to make it easier to work together than alone. We want to keep changing the way software is developed for the better by making collaborating easier and sharing a no-brainer.

Exciting, if vague, stuff. We’re looking forward to seeing what GitHub has in store - particularly in opening up the world of coding and open-source development to beginners.

Elliot Bentley

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