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IndustryEmail marketing
Founded2001; 20 years ago (2001)
FoundersBen Chestnut
Mark Armstrong
Dan Kurzius
HeadquartersPonce City Market, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.[1]
Key people
Ben Chestnut (CEO)
ProductsEmail marketing
Number of employees
ParentThe Rocket Science Group LLC.[5]

Mailchimp is an American marketing automation platform and email marketing service.[6] It is the trading name of its operator, Rocket Science Group, an American company founded in 2001 by Ben Chestnut and Mark Armstrong,[7] with Dan Kurzius joining at a later date.[8][9]

"Mailchimp, named after their most popular e-card character, launched in 2001 and remained a side project for several years, earning a few thousand dollars a month."[10] Mailchimp began as a paid service and added a freemium option in 2009. Within a year, its user base had grown from 85,000 to 450,000.[11] By June 2014, it was sending over 10 billion emails per month on behalf of its users.[12] In 2017, the company was gaining 14,000 new customers every day. The company has remained owned by its co-founders and has not accepted venture capital funds.[2]

In 2016, Mailchimp was ranked No. 7 on the Forbes Cloud 100 list.[13] In February 2017, the company was named one of Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies of 2017.[3] In August 2017, It was reported that Mailchimp would be opening offices in Brooklyn and Oakland, California.[14]

In February 2019, Mailchimp acquired LemonStand, a smaller competitor.[15] Later in 2019, the company announced its annual revenue would reach $700 million. Mailchimp later announced their plans to shift from mail distribution into offering "a full marketing platform aimed at smaller organizations."[16] To this end, Mailchimp acquired the London-based media and magazine company, Courier, in March 2020, with the stated goal of international growth. The magazine has a readership of 100,000 readers in more than 26 countries.[17]

The MailChimp founders[18] have become notoriously known as the poster faces[clarification needed] for a growing list of successfully bootstrapped startups[19] in that it has required no outside funding, no plans for an IPO and no to all the companies that have tried to acquire it[20] (interested parties have included private equity firms as well as big tech players).

Marketing campaigns[edit]

As a podcast advertiser, Mailchimp also sponsored the launch of Serial, a podcast exploring a murder case over multiple episodes. During the series, parodies of Serial have targeted several of the show's aspects, including the podcast's sponsor (especially the meme "MailKimp").[21][22]

Mandrill controversy[edit]

In February 2016, Mailchimp announced it was merging Mandrill transactional email service into Mailchimp as an add-on feature, and gave customers 60 days' notice to switch to the new pricing structure or find an alternative service platform.[23] The new pricing structure required a paid Mailchimp plan before being able to purchase Mandrill credits, resulting in customers paying for two products in order to access Mandrill.[24]

Previously, customers were able to purchase Mandrill credits for sending emails without signing up on Mailchimp. The credits were originally priced at $9.95 for 25,000 emails but increased to $20 for the same number of emails under the new pricing scheme. In addition to needing to purchase Mandrill credits, customers now need to be on a paid Mailchimp monthly plan (the minimum monthly plan being $10 a month), even if the customer has no need for Mailchimp services and only wants access to Mandrill. Mandrill was later renamed Mailchimp Transactional.[25]


  1. ^ "Ponce City Market". Retrieved 2019-03-28.
  2. ^ a b "Want Proof That Patience Pays Off? Ask the Founders of This 17-Year-Old $525 Million Email Empire". 11 December 2017. Retrieved 2018-05-29.
  3. ^ a b "Why MailChimp Is One Of The Most Innovative Companies Of 2017". Fast Company. 2017-02-13. Retrieved 2018-05-29.
  4. ^ "Mailchimp's About Us". Retrieved 2018-05-29.
  5. ^ "Rocket Science Group". Archived from the original on 2018-05-20. Retrieved 2012-10-05.
  6. ^ Park, Lloyd. "Mailchimp Review, Pricing & Features". SoftwarePundit. Retrieved 2021-02-18.
  7. ^ Grantham, Russell. "'Everything came and went too fast,' dot-com vet says". Atlanta Journal Constitution (2000–12–03).
  8. ^ "Mailchimp | CrunchBase Profile". Retrieved 2013-06-17.
  9. ^ Manjoo, Farhad (2016-10-05). "Mailchimp and the Un-Silicon Valley Way to Make It as a Start-Up". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
  10. ^ Konrad, Alex. "The New Atlanta Billionaires Behind An Unlikely Tech Unicorn". Forbes. Retrieved 2020-05-08.
  11. ^ Ben (2010-09-27). "Going Freemium: One Year Later | Mailchimp Email Marketing Blog". Retrieved 2013-06-17.
  12. ^ "Mailchimp Hits Milestone 10 Billion Emails Per Month; Adding Headcount and Office Space". Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
  13. ^ "Forbes Cloud 100". Forbes. Retrieved 29 October 2016.
  14. ^ "Mailchimp to open office in Downtown Brooklyn - Brooklyn". Brooklyn. 2017-08-04. Retrieved 2017-11-02.
  15. ^ "Before breaking up with Shopify, Mailchimp quietly acqui-hired LemonStand, a Shopify competitor". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2019-04-30.
  16. ^ "Mailchimp expands from email to full marketing platform, says it will make $700M in 2019". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2019-05-13.
  17. ^ Swant, Marty (2020-03-03). "Mailchimp Acquires British Bimonthly Magazine Courier". Forbes. Retrieved 2020-03-25.
  18. ^ Kim, Larry (2019-04-10). "10 Fascinating Facts About Mailchimp CEO Ben Chestnut". Retrieved 2020-11-16.
  19. ^ "The Case for Bootstrapping w/Ben Chestnut". WaitWhat. Retrieved 2020-11-16.
  20. ^ "Mailchimp's Ben Chestnut on bootstrapping a startup to $700M in revenue". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2020-11-16.
  21. ^ Roe, Mike (November 8, 2014). "Serial: The hottest podcast with the most spot-on parodies". 89.3KPCC. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  22. ^ Fitzpatrick, Molly (November 6, 2014). "Why are Serial podcast fans so obsessed with Mailchimp?". V[ ]cative. Vocativ. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  23. ^ Williams, Owen (2016-02-25). "In hostile move, Mandrill gives all developers 60 days to switch to paid Mailchimp service". The Next Web.
  24. ^ Nicastro, Dom (2016-02-26). "MailChimp's Mandrill Move Enrages Email Users". CMSWire.
  25. ^ MailChimp (2016-02-24). "Important Changes to Mandrill". Mandrill Email Platform Blog.