History witnesses a success of every side project that did not compromise on solving issues, and showed no signs of giving up.
Unsplash started its journey in 2013 as a Tumblr blog. It was created as a spin-off from the Montréal design studio Crew when the business engaged a local photographer to take some photos for a project and thought they should do something with the unusable surplus photos. Cho later posted the photoshoot outtakes from his business on Tumblr and allowed anybody to use them however they liked. Solved problems of millions out there who were tired of bad quality, watermarked, low-res, or expensive stock photography.
They launched on Hacker News and were voted the most popular story. On its first day, Unsplash attracted more than 50,000 visitors. This side project turned into its own company after saving Crew from nearly running out of money. In order to solely focus on Unsplash, the Montréal startup sold Crew in 2017.
Unsplash has developed into a platform with millions of users, millions of free photos, and thousands of partner integrations. On an international scale, Unsplash has seen more than two billion photographs downloaded this year.
Unsplash was acquired by Getty Images in March 2021.
“We could not be happier to welcome Unsplash to the Getty Images family,” said Craig Peters, CEO of Getty Images. “The Unsplash team share our values and share our vision of enabling global creativity and communication. We are impressed by what the Unsplash team and community has built and we look forward to supporting their continued development.”
Cho will continue to lead Unsplash while it continues to function as a separate brand and part of Getty Images.
“I’m so proud of what the Unsplash community and team has created,” said Mikael Cho. “And it’s only the beginning. This partnership is an important milestone for Unsplash, but our mission of photos for everyone remains unchanged. We are very excited to partner with Getty Images to move the industry forward together.”
According to Crunchbase, Unsplash has raised more than $31.3 million to date.