History of xTuple — A New Kind of ERP Company

The Birth of OpenMFG

OpenMFG — founded in late 2001 — came together as a live, in-production enterprise software solution at a customer site, a business chosen deliberately due to its large size and multiple locations with both process flow and discrete manufacturing operations. OpenMFG was written to be a full-featured ERP (enterprise resource planning) and MRP (Material Requirements Planning), product, as industry-generic as possible, adhering tightly to APICS-standard definitions and processes.

OpenMFG software, well received by small manufacturers, also created an opportunity to form partnerships with value-added resellers (VARs) servicing manufacturing customers, accounting and consulting firms, software developers and systems integrators. VARs hungry for more powerful, flexible and affordable solutions to offer their customers were tired of being taken for granted by other software vendors. Technical end-users at customer sites and the VARs found themselves contributing to the collaborative development of the software. Who knows the requirements better than the people who actually implement and use the system?

For five-plus years, we focused exclusively on mission-critical ERP software for manufacturing. The goal was to build a lasting, sustainable company around a product which people could literally entrust their business. We developed a hyrbid business model and approach to product licensing that allowed us to experiment with open source, while not exposing our young company (and customers) to undue risk. That initial business model leveraged the power of open source in two ways:

  1. By building on top of open source pieces such as PostgreSQL, the world's most advanced open source relational database, and
  2. By sharing the OpenMFG source code with a growing community of partners and customers, any member of the community could sponsor new development, fix bugs or contribute new code. Many did, and still do.

The Launch of xTuple

With the launch of the fully open source PostBooks® application and the renaming of the company as xTuple in 2007, we deepened our commitment to customers, partners and the larger open source community; expressly broadened the scope of our ambition; and along the way, ushered in a new day for business management software.

There is no longer any doubt — if there ever was — that collaborative "open source" development by global communities with shared interests is simply a better way to make software. The growing power of open source has worked its way "up the stack" of information technology — from operating systems, to programming tools, Web servers, databases, reporting tools and business applications.

xTuple has grown steadily as a company, a product, and as an open source community.

Our Greatest Hits, Today and Tomorrow

Greatest Hits, Volume One (2004-2008)
Represents "13 Classic Enhancements by the Original Customers" — a tongue-in-cheek compilation highlighting the value of xTuple's open source approach to the challenging questions of ERP implementation
Greatest Hits, Volume Two (2008-2012)
Second "best of" or "greatest hits" album — a collection of the most well-regarded and highest-rated features — developed in partnership with an engaged global customer and community base

Greatest Hits, Volume Three (2013-2018)
Paying tribute with a special homage to one of the best-selling live albums of all time — Frampton Comes Alive! — features the greatest of the great xTuple open source ERP's contributed features

Crowd-sourcing xTuple Key Features & PostBooks®

Feature Mob 2010
"Open Source meets Groupon" for affordable, multi-platform email integration — as large numbers of micro-sponsors drive development of a key new feature.
Feature Mob 2013
World’s #1 open source enterprise resource planning Software Company kicks-off second community development initiative — akin to a “Flash Mob” for new features.

Media Inquiry

A company with a mission, xTuple helps business of all sizes — from startup to Global 1000 — successfully implement powerful, and easy-to-use, open source business management software to grow their enterprise or organization profitably. Need to contact us with a media inquiry?