We Built an Open-Source High-Performance MTA

KumoMTA - Open Source PowerMTA alternative.

“We just don’t want to get into another relationship like that again.” That’s something I’ve heard a lot over the last couple of years when talking to on-prem email senders, and it’s changed my life, read on to learn why.

I’ve been working in on-prem email infrastructure since 2006 when I was the first Sales Engineer for what was then OmniTI, then Message Systems, then SparkPost, and in my 12 years there I’ve worked with a significant percentage of the largest ESPs in the world. When I first started we sold Momentum (then Ecelerity) with perpetual licenses, then moved to an ILF pricing model where customers were charged a one-time fee for a certain tier of annual sending volume, and paid the difference to the next tier as they grew. These days new licenses are charged by volume on an annual basis.

Large senders naturally had concerns with each of these moves, along with the move from an on-prem focus to a cloud service, which many of them see as a competitor. In addition, as a company moves its focus to the cloud it’s difficult to maintain focus on an on-prem offering, and so they not only felt increasingly squeezed, they simultaneously saw the ROI on their forced investment dwindling.

These people are in a bind: they are not happy with the current situation, but when they look at alternatives they face the prospect of starting the cycle all over again.

I knew there was a better option: I started my career after college working for MySQL AB, creator of one of the most popular Open-Source databases. I learned from that experience that Open-Source is a viable business model: provide quality software under a free license while charging for support, training, and consulting to its enterprise users.

And so I teamed up with two former coworkers from my email infrastructure days (Tom Mairs ⚙and Wez Furlong) and we’ve built KumoMTA, the first Open-Source MTA designed for large-scale senders. It’s a true Open-Source PowerMTA alternative. It’s not only (in our opinion) a superior platform, but it’s released under the Apache 2 license, enabling us to have a much better relationship with our users. They don’t have to worry that we’ll go under, raise prices, or use their license fees to compete with them in the future, and they don’t have to worry that their software will shut down if they stop paying us.

Instead, we get to focus on generating mutual benefit; a future where we support our users and they support us while we build a community of Deliverability and MailOps professionals.

So come check it out, you can find us on LinkedIn at Kumo Corp, and the server and its source code are free to view at https://kumomta.com/. Join our community on Discord at https://kumomta.com/discord we’re excited to have you join us in our journey!



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