2 weeks ago, the design software giant Adobe announced its acquisition of Figma for $20 billion in cash and stock.
The acquisition’s benefits
From their official announcements, both companies seem quite satisfied with the deal, which is expected to close in 2023 once regulatory approvals have been passed. For Adobe, the addition of Figma to its popular line of software products will not only eliminate its Achilles’ heel in the UI/UX field, but also allow it to reallocate investment in Adobe XD, Adobe’s own UI/UX tool that has not performed as well as other Adobe suite software, elsewhere.
Moreover, through Figma’s collaborative design platform, Adobe can tap into the market of non-designers by incorporating its existing tools to the real-time design experience. Figma’s collaborative tools extends design beyond designers to other teams in the product design process, including project managers and developers. Adobe XD, which was geared towards designers only, was unable to reach these potential customers previously.
Figma also has something to gain from this acquisition. According to Dylan Field, Figma’s co-founder and CEO, this acquisition is “a huge opportunity” for the platform to grow thanks to Adobe’s resources, technology and expertise. Looking at Adobe’s previous acquisitions, Framework.io had a 50% annual revenue increase while Workfront’s revenue rose by 35%. Based on this trend Figma’s business could benefit greatly from this acquisition.
In addition, Adobe has promised the Figma team complete autonomy on their own projects, while also introducing their imaging, photography, illustration, video, 3D and font technology for the platform’s expansion. Field sees this as a great opportunity for Figma to continue improving its existing products Figma Design, FigJam and the Figma community platform, while it simultaneously looks for other opportunities in new areas.
Concerns from the community
The design community, as well as Adobe’s and Figma’s competitors however, do not share their optimism about the deal. Some state that Figma’s previous independence in the market was what made it so attractive to users, as the community is increasingly wary of Adobe’s growing manipulation over the design software market. With Figma gone from the competition, there will be fewer high quality and affordable alternatives to Adobe out in the market.
Others are more concerned about possible changes to Figma’s product pricing, worrying that Figma’s affordable monthly plans and free student access benefit might become history once it fully integrates itself into Adobe’s predatory pricing structure. Despite clarifications by both companies that Figma’s pricing plans will remain unchanged, the community still remains skeptical, even considering migrating to rival software like Sketch.
Other software choices?
If you are looking for more Figma alternatives besides Sketch, we also recommend Penpot. Like Figma and Sketch, Penpot also supports collaborative UI/UX design and offers a vast selection of design tools and useful functions. What’s best about Penpot is that, unlike the other two software, Penpot is open source and hence free to use. For teams on a tight budget, Penpot is the go-to tool. To know more about Penpot, here’s a course to get you started.
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