Incorporating Affinity: Enhancing Canva’s Competitive Edge Against Adobe’s Creative Suite

Canva has typically targeted the beginner for their products, but company co-Founder Cliff Obrecht sees the acquisition opening the door to more advanced users. “Canva needed products with more complex capabilities to go up against Adobe,” Wang told TechCrunch. In a blog post on the Affinity website, CEO Ashley Hewson tried to allay customer fears about the change. “In Canva, we’ve found a kindred spirit who can help us take Affinity to new levels. With Affinity, Canva gains 3 million users worldwide along with 90 employees who will be joining the company.

Canva, the popular Australian design and visual communication startup, has made a major announcement today – it has acquired Affinity (formerly Serif), a creative tools company headquartered in the United Kingdom. According to Bloomberg, the deal is worth hundreds of millions of pounds (equivalent to approximately $380 million USD), a figure which has been confirmed by Canva to TechCrunch.

Traditionally catering to beginner designers, Canva’s co-founder Cliff Obrecht sees this acquisition as an opportunity to expand their market to include more advanced users. In a blog post announcing the deal, Obrecht wrote, “While the past decade at Canva has focused on empowering the 99% of knowledge workers without design training, true empowerment means catering to professional designers as well. By joining forces with Affinity, we are thrilled to unlock the full spectrum of designers at every level and stage of their creative journey.”

With the addition of Affinity, Canva now has a better chance at competing with heavyweight design software company Adobe, especially with their popular product Adobe Express. According to Ray Wang, founder and principal analyst at Constellation Research, “Canva needed more complex products to go up against Adobe… Affinity offers a user-friendly photo editor and easy-to-use page layout tools.” Furthermore, Wang believes that the cultures of the two companies are well-matched.

As expected, both parties involved in the acquisition have expressed their excitement and delight at the deal. In a blog post on the Affinity website, CEO Ashley Hewson assured customers that their products will continue to thrive under Canva’s ownership. “We understand that our loyal customers, some of whom have been with us since our very first Mac app, may have concerns about what this acquisition means for the future of our products,” wrote Hewson.

However, he also stated, like every CEO of an acquired company, that the merge with Canva opens up more possibilities for Affinity than they could have achieved independently. “We have found a like-minded partner in Canva who can help us elevate Affinity even further. With the extra resources, we can deliver even more, at a faster pace,” Hewson explained.

In 2021, Canva’s valuation reached an impressive $40 billion. Although it has slightly declined due to a recent secondary stock sale, the company still holds a hefty valuation of $26 billion. With such financial power, Canva is well-equipped to make significant acquisitions like Affinity. This deal adds 3 million users worldwide and 90 employees to Canva’s growing team, with the acquisition already being finalized.

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Dylan Williams

Dylan Williams is a multimedia storyteller with a background in video production and graphic design. He has a knack for finding and sharing unique and visually striking stories from around the world.

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