SugarCRM Appoints Open Source “Ninja-neer” John Mertic to Manage its Fast-Growing CRM User Community

Community Edition Users at 800,000+ and Counting as Sugar Unveils New Tools for Developers at OSCON

PORTLAND, Ore.—July 25, 2011 —SugarCRM, the world’s fastest-growing customer relationship management (CRM) company, today announced that its open source community has surged to over 800,000 SugarCRM Community Edition users, and to manage this creative (and boisterous) population, Sugar has tapped PHP professional, John Mertic, as its community manager.

Mertic, a noted figure in the open source world, is the author of two books on open source CRM, including the new eBook Building on SugarCRM: Creating Applications the Easy Way, published by O’Reilly Media. The book, which will be available free to all OSCON attendees, spotlights the technical value of the SugarCRM platform for developers and addresses why a CRM platform is more advantageous than a CRM package.

Mertic’s appointment was announced at the O’Reilly Open Source Convention (OSCON) being held July 25-29, 2011 in Portland, Oregon. Also introduced at OSCON was the beta release of SODA v2, which represents a major upgrade to one of the open source tools SugarCRM has built for the functional testing of web applications. This continues SugarCRM’s commitment to open source, contributing also to other vendor-agnostic open source projects including PHP, SodaMachine, MeterMaid, SugarMMM, TidBit, and NetworkedHelpDesk.org. For more information about SugarCRM's open source projects and CRM community, visit the SugarCRM Open Source Tools website.

Community Growth

The growth of the SugarCRM community has accelerated rapidly, as more developers and organizations worldwide realize the power and benefits of an open CRM platform. More than 29,000 developers are now registered on SugarForge.org, the SugarCRM community website, and there are more than 1,000 projects on SugarForge and SugarExchange. In total, there have been more than 10 million downloads of SugarCRM and its related projects, and there are over 800,000 people currently using SugarCRM at more than 70,000 organizations worldwide.

One of the hundreds of thousands of successful Community Edition users is Dave Wilson, technology director for University Readers, the trusted provider of custom publishing solutions for over 2,000 instructors nationwide. “As our business began to grow, we realized our current infrastructure of photocopied paper forms to capture crucial data and manage projects was not scalable,” Wilson said. “This process led to decentralized data that was not visible to all areas of the company and was not optimal for our partner management processes. After evaluating several CRM tools, we decided that the SugarCRM Community Edition was the only open source CRM solution that met our scalability requirements.”

Activities at OSCON

As a platinum sponsor of OSCON, SugarCRM will be participating in a number of programs and activities:

  • Tutorials – John Mertic will host a tutorial, “Building an Application on the SugarCRM Platform," Tuesday, July 26, 2011 at 1:30 p.m. In this free half-day tutorial, attendees will learn how to build a business application on the open source SugarCRM platform.
  • Speaking Sessions - Mertic will also present the session titled, “Making Your PHP Application Easy to Customize," on Thursday, July 28, 2011 at 2:30 p.m. Attendees will learn techniques and best practices for enabling customization of their PHP application.
  • Distribution of O’Reilly eBook – OSCON attendees can receive a free copy of Mertic’s eBook, simply by registering for the event. Attendees who go to Mertic’s tutorial will receive a free hard copy. The book can also be purchased publicly online at prices starting at $9.99.
  • Booth – SugarCRM architects and engineers will be in the SugarCRM’s booth #601 to talk about their open source projects, test and development tools. They’ll be playing Ninja games and distributing complimentary Ninja T-Shirts and books. And, if you’re looking for a job, SugarCRM is hiring. Learn about open positions in engineering, QA, UI/UX, support, and more.

SugarCRM Open+ Developer Program Momentum

The SugarCRM Open+ Developer Program lets developers interact more closely with SugarCRM's engineering and technical teams in helping shape the future of the product family. Open+ program members are granted access to SugarCRM's development repositories on GitHub, where they can access pre-release code and contribute features and bug fixes for inclusion in the products. They also are included in early access programs, invited to SugarCRM code sprints, and given the option to participate in monthly webinars to learn and discuss developing on the SugarCRM platform. Developers who fully participate in the program are recognized publicly as core contributors to SugarCRM customers and prospects.

“As a developer myself, I’m committed to supporting the open source and PHP communities,” said John Mertic. “The SugarCRM Open+ Developer Program started internally just nine months ago, and we already have 25 organizations participating, we’ve had nearly 50 bug fixes brought into the product, and we’ve had two successful code sprints. The future of business is open, and I’m looking forward to providing the community members with the tools they need to develop on the Sugar platform as well as giving them a larger voice inside SugarCRM.”

SugarCRM would like to congratulate the members of the SugarCRM Open+ program who won the company’s recent bug fix contest:

  • 1st Place – Fabio Grande, developer for Poker SpA and a bronze partner
  • 2nd Place – Jason Eggers, a prolific Sugar community member
  • 3rd Place – Matt Poer, lead developer for Profiling Solutions and a gold partner

About SugarCRM

SugarCRM makes CRM Simple. As the world's fastest growing customer relationship management (CRM) company, SugarCRM applications have been downloaded more than seven million times and currently serve over 800,000 end users in 80 languages. Over 7,000 customers have chosen SugarCRM's On-Site and Cloud Computing services over proprietary alternatives. SugarCRM has been recognized for its customer success and product innovation by CRM Magazine, InfoWorld, Customer Interaction Solutions and Intelligent Enterprise.

For more information, call (408) 454-6900 or 1 87 SUGARCRM toll-free in the US, email contact@sugarcrm.com, or visit http://www.sugarcrm.com.

Media Contact:
Elena Annuzzi
SugarCRM
(408) 792-6952
eannuzzi@sugarcrm.com

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