Pippin Williamson has announced that Sandhills Development, LLC has been acquired by Awesome Motive. AffiliateWP, Easy Digital Downloads, Sugar Calendar, WP Simple Pay, and the Payouts Service are joining the Awesome Motive collection of WordPress products and services. As usual, customers can expect little in the way of change in the immediate future.
After so many years of working on Easy Digital Downloads and other products, Pippin explained that the reason for selling his business had to do with his father experiencing a heart attack and wanting to spend as much quality time with his family as possible.
By being intentional about building a sellable business and one that did not require my active participation to operate, I afforded myself and my partners the opportunity to seek out or accept an acquisition offer if the right time came.
For me, the time to begin seeking out acquisition offers came earlier this year when my dad had a heart attack that put him in the hospital for several days and landed him with an extended recovery period. While he was in the hospital a second time, a harsh reality set in: my dad is only a few years from being the one sitting in that chair while we cut firewood. That was a stark reminder of the brevity of our time on this earth, helping me recognize and remember just how important it was for me to spend as much quality time with my family as possible.Pippin Williamson
He also described his loss of passion for the web and building software products. Between his lack of passion and his father’s heart attack, he decided he had to sell the company.
I spoke to a few Sandhills Development employees on the basis of anonymity and although most of them made the switch to Awesome Motive, they did so reluctantly. Sandhills employees loved the work environment and the company Pippin and his partners built. They also loved the four-day work week experiment that was in progress but is non-existent at Awesome Motive.
Despite some reservations about Syed Balkhi and Awesome Motive, the employees I talked to decided to give him and the company a chance to see for themselves what it’s like. Of those employees that have made the switch, they describe the onboarding process to Awesome Motive as smooth and being treated with kindness.
I also spoke to a few employees of Awesome Motive and all of them had positive things to say about their experience working for the company.
How Will Cross Promotion Work?
We know that no immediate changes will take place with the various products Sandhills Development created, but what’s not clear are the plans for each of these products, specifically, marketing of other products and services Awesome Motive owns and how aggressive the company will be on pushing free users into the commercial versions. I use MonsterInsights and the plugin is very aggressive in trying to convert me into a paying customer.
With Easy Digital Downloads and other products having such a strong and loyal base of customers I don’t think Awesome Motive will be as aggressive with coss promotion as I feel it would upset a lot of people. But, who knows?
Pippin Is Free to Brew All of the Beer
At the end of the announcement, Pippin says that he plans to focus on conservation efforts and that his time of spending late nights in front of a screen are over. “After finishing a transition period with Awesome Motive, I will retire from WordPress and then put my focus into spending time with my family, nature conservation efforts, and Sandhills Brewing,” he said. He concludes the post by thanking his wife, his business partners, and all of the customers who made his business possible.
From the outside looking in, Pippin was always someone I think I would have enjoyed working for. I really enjoyed his year in review posts and I’m happy to see he will continue the tradition of posting them every year. It’s sad to see him leave the WordPress space but if it means he has more time to brew Thin Mint Stout and nationally distribute it, then I’m all for it. Best wishes to you Pippin and congrats on putting yourself in a position to spend quality time with your family.