As Adobe seeks to plug holes as they increase their move into the Cloud, certain skeptics are weary of what will happen with otherwise free services such as Behance. Where did this acquisition come from and what does it mean for you?

“Our mission to connect and empower the creative world is getting a big boost today. Our team is thrilled to join Adobe and take Behance to the next level. We’ve been given an opportunity to influence creative work, careers, and the creative industry on a grand scale, and we intend to do just that.”


Reflecting on their past, the development team mentions their five years together making mistakes, discoveries, and reengineering their products, business structure, and process repeatedly. Most importantly, the work of it’s users and the platform to elevate their users’ careers kept them inspired and dedicated towards moving forward into their sale to Adobe. While the Behance team will still remain the same (in NYC), the service is bound to see some differences as it launches into Adobe’s bold Creative Cloud.


What’s Up With Adobe These Days?

The acquisition of The Behance Network is just a small piece of the big pie for Adobe’s roadmap into the cloud. Some other recent business plays:

    -Becoming one of the first major software providers to use a subscription service for their software: Creative Cloud

    -The acquisition of Typekit

    -Increased interest and resources in HTML5 development

    -More active contributor to open source tools and services (jQuery, PhoneGap, WebKit, etc.)

But what does this mean specifically for Behance users? According to Behance, these were some factors considered for the move:

    Connecting the creative community is the best way to empower the creative community. The creative industry has always been plagued with inefficiency and disorganization. But when we come together, we can use connectivity and transparency to our advantage. The prospect of using Adobe’s reach to connect the entire creative community is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to empower the creative world.

    It’s about time our tools integrated with the way we discover, inspire and collaborate. For too long, the creative world has struggled with a disconnected creative process. Creation should be inherently collaborative – and must evolve more frequently than typical software upgrade cycles. If the tools we use to create are connected with how we showcase and discover creative work, we can help usher in a new era of idea exchange and collaborative creation.

    Online applications should foster the discovery of talent and “creative meritocracy.” Those of you who know us well know that Behance is obsessed with fostering proper attribution in creative work. With more transparency around who created what – and with whom – your work will increasingly become a source of new opportunity. We call it “creative meritocracy,” and it happens when the creative world’s work is organized, properly credited, and more easily discovered. As you put your work into the world, we want to make sure you get the credit (and opportunity) you deserve.

And According to Computer Arts Projects’ Rob Carney:

“So, Adobe has acquired Behance. It’s kind of surprising but not exactly a shock. Acquisition has been a major strategy for Adobe over the last year – picking up almost any company that will boost its Creative Cloud, and indeed social marketing offerings. But Behance is different. While you could argue that like Typekit (acquired earlier this year) Behance is a service, it’s more than that. It’s a community. And a massive one at that. And communities are where big companies usually struggle. It’s much easier to engage with an audience when you’re NOT trying to sell them something – rather offering a free service that, at the end of the day, enables them to make money (in Behance’s case through showcasing portfolios to potential clients).

It’s rumoured that Adobe paid over $100 million for Behance. That’s a lot of cash, but for Adobe, the acquisition of Behance plugs a gap in its services. As Behance points out on its blog post community is the key, and its an engaged community that Adobe can try to keep excited about its products.”

At the end of the day, despite the odd software crash here and there, Adobe has consistently made my life easier as a creative–and now encouraging a deeper sense of community can be added to that growing list.

Images via Teodoru Badiu


Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.