The Mozilla Corporation (abbreviated MoCo) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mozilla Foundation that coordinates and integrates the development of Internet-related applications such as the Firefox and SeaMonkey web browsers and the Mozilla Thunderbird email client by a global community of open-source developers, some of whom are employed by the corporation itself. The corporation also distributes and promotes these products. Unlike the non-profit Mozilla Foundation, and the Mozilla open source project, founded by the now defunct Netscape Corporation, the Mozilla Corporation is a taxable entity. The Mozilla Corporation reinvests some or all of its profits back into the Mozilla projects. The Mozilla Corporation's stated aim is to work towards the Mozilla Foundation's public benefit to "promote choice and innovation on the Internet."
A MozillaZine article explained:
The Mozilla Foundation will ultimately control the activities of the Mozilla Corporation and will retain its 100 percent ownership of the new subsidiary. Any profits made by the Mozilla Corporation will be invested back into the Mozilla project. There will be no shareholders, no stock options will be issued and no dividends will be paid. The Mozilla Corporation will not be floating on the stock market and it will be impossible for any company to take over or buy a stake in the subsidiary. The Mozilla Foundation will continue to own the Mozilla trademarks and other intellectual property and will license them to the Mozilla Corporation. The Foundation will also continue to govern the source code repository and control who is allowed to check in.
The Mozilla Corporation was established on August 3, 2005 to handle the revenue-related operations of the Mozilla Foundation. As a non-profit, the Mozilla Foundation is limited in terms of the types and amounts of revenue. The Mozilla Corporation, as a taxable organization (essentially, a commercial operation), does not have to comply with such strict rules. Upon its creation, the Mozilla Corporation took over several areas from the Mozilla Foundation, including coordination and integration of the development of Firefox and Thunderbird (by the global free software community) and the management of relationships with businesses.
With the creation of the Mozilla Corporation, the rest of the Mozilla Foundation narrowed its focus to concentrate on the Mozilla project's governance and policy issues. In November 2005, with the release of Mozilla Firefox 1.5, the Mozilla Corporation's website at mozilla.com was unveiled as the new home of the Firefox and Thunderbird products online.
In 2006 the Mozilla Corporation generated 66.8 million dollars in revenue and 19.8 million in expenses, with 85% of that revenue coming from Google for "assigning [Google] as the browser's default search engine, and for click-throughs on ads placed on the ensuing search results pages."
In March 2006, Jason Calacanis reported a rumor on his blog that Mozilla Corporation gained $72M during the previous year, mainly thanks to the Google search box in the Firefox browser. The rumor was later addressed by Christopher Blizzard, then a member of the board, who wrote on his blog that, "it’s not correct, though not off by an order of magnitude." Two years later, TechCrunch wrote: "In return for setting Google as the default search engine on Firefox, Google pays Mozilla a substantial sum – in 2006 the total amounted to around $57 million, or 85% of the company’s total revenue. The deal was originally going to expire in 2006, but was later extended to 2008 and will now run through 2011." The deal was extended again another 3 years, until November 2014. In this latest deal Mozilla will get another $900 million ($300 million annually) from Google, nearly 3 times the previous amount.
In August 2006, Microsoft posted a letter on Mozilla newsgroups and offered to open up a new open-source facility at its headquarters in Redmond, Wash., to Mozilla software engineers. Mozilla responded by accepting the offer.
Most Mozilla Foundation employees transferred to the new organization at Mozilla Corporation's founding.
Board of directors
The Board of directors is appointed by and responsible to Mozilla Corporation's board.
- Mitchell Baker, Chairperson
- Reid Hoffman, former CEO of LinkedIn
- John Lilly, former CEO of Mozilla Corporation
- Ellen Siminoff, President and CEO of Shmoop University and Chairman of Efficient Frontier
The senior management team includes:
- Gary Kovacs, CEO
- Brendan Eich, CTO
- Jim Cook, CFO
- Chris Beard, Chief Marketing Officer
- Jay Sullivan, COO
- Harvey Anderson, Senior VP of Business and Legal Affairs
- Debbie Cohen, Chief of People
- Li Gong, Senior VP of Mobile Devices
Notable current employees
- Sheeri Cabral, MySQL DBA
- Asa Dotzler, Director of Firefox Desktop
- Dave Miller, lead developer of Bugzilla
- Johnny Stenbäck
- Andreas Gal
Notable past employees
- Christopher Blizzard, formerly of Red Hat
- John Lilly, formerly CEO of Mozilla, now partner at Greylock Partners
- John Resig, Technical Evangelist (jQuery Creator) (now at Khan Academy)
- Mike Schroepfer, VP of Engineering (now at Facebook)
- Mike Shaver, VP of Technical Strategy (now at Facebook)
- Window Snyder, Chief Security Officer (now at Apple Inc.)
- "Mozilla Foundation and Subsidiary: 2011 Independent Auditors' Report and Consolidated Financial Statements" (PDF). Mozilla Foundation. 2012-11-15. Retrieved 2013-03-07.
- Rouget, Paul (20 Sep 2011), @taliabale Mozilla has ~600 employee (not 250) (tweet), Twitter, retrieved 20 Sep 2011
- staff (5 Aug 2005), Mozilla Foundation Reorganization, Mozilla Corporation, archived from the original on 21 Apr 2008
- "Mozilla Foundation Forms New Organization to Further the Creation of Free, Open Source Internet Software, Including the Award-Winning Mozilla Firefox Browser" (Press release). Mozilla. 3 August 2005.
- MozillaZine article: "Mozilla Foundation Announces Creation of Mozilla Corporation" Retrieved via the Internet Archive on 03-24-2009.
- Keizer, Gregg (25 October 2007). "Mozilla can live without Google's money, Baker says". Computerworld.
- Houston, Thomas (5 Dececember 2011). "Future of Firefox's Google search partnership remains uncertain". The Verge. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
- Calacanis blog: "Firefox (Mozilla Corporation/Mozilla Foundation) made $72M last year?!"
- Blizzard, Christopher (7 March 2006). "apply pinky to corner of mouth". 0xDeadBeef.com. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
- Kincaid, Jason (28 August 2008). "Mozilla Extends Lucrative Deal With Google For 3 Years". TechCrunch. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
- Murphy, David (24 December 2011). "Google Paying Mozilla Almost $1B for Firefox Search: Why?". PC Magazine. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
- "mozilla.dev.planning Microsoft offer". Google Groups.
- "Microsoft offers helping hand to Firefox". CNET.
- "So Long, Chris Blizzard". Asa Dotzler. 2012-03-16. Retrieved 2013-03-07.