10 Years of Xceptance – The Story

Ten years and 230 projects later it’s time to look back at the beginnings of Xceptance. Let us take you on a quick trip down memory lane!

The Story

In the beginning there was a small group of four colleagues who decided to take a chance and try something new. They pooled their resources, knowledge and QA experience and struck out on their own. The beginnings of Xceptance are thus all about passion and commitment and the belief in making software better.

The very first company meetings were held in the living room of one of the founders, lending the enterprise a definite ‘start-up feeling’. The business plan proposed adding just two people in the first five years, but that didn’t quite work out as expected because five years later more than 20 people worked for Xceptance, the majority of whom are still with the company to this day.

The Name

There are several anecdotes about the origins of the company name as well. The name ‘Xceptance’ is based on the term ‘acceptance testing’ which stands for a certain way of testing to make sure the requirements of a contract or specification are met. As obvious as that might sound, this wasn’t the first choice. Names of constellations, stars, and animals were all on the shortlist. (Un)fortunately the domains for those names were all taken, and that’s how ‘acceptance’ became the front-runner. For a fancier version the ‘a’ became an ‘x’; that turned into ‘Xeptance’, then ‘Xcceptance’, until someone suggested that just one ‘c’ might be enough. That is how ‘Xceptance’ was born.

The Office

After graduating from meetings in cafés, kitchens and living rooms, we had a stint in a shared office with a befriended company and then Xceptance moved to its new quarters in the center of Jena. Once again a shared office, but at this point with Demandware.

In those days people at Xceptance had to close ranks; there was just one relatively small office space for almost a dozen employees, but it worked out well and the company kept growing. As a result, people at Xceptance had to wrap up their equipment once again to move to the current location a few blocks away from the old office. The movers had been booked for the next day and everybody expected to spend one last day working in the old office. That plan, however, got monkeywrenched by the internet service provider who cut services at the old office a day early. The lucky Xceptance people had no choice but to pack their essentials themselves and schlep everything over to the new office.

The People

Eighty percent of the employees who started in the first three years are still with us. They’ve led Xceptance to today’s success, and their loyalty means a lot to us. But we also would not be where we are now without all our more recent hires. They ensure that the company’s head and heart are constantly in motion, always developing, never resting. Plus we’re always looking for talents with what we call the tester gene. Check our open positions in Germany and the US. We’re looking forward to meeting you!

The Tool

In the beginning of Xceptance, we did not have a performance testing tool. If a customer needed testing, we had to buy or license one. At that point, we were still a startup ourselves and we worked for startups, so money was short and all the good tools were just too expensive. So we decided to start our own tool chain, called ‘Yart’ back then, for ‘Yet Another Regression Tool’. Once this little hack proved to be useful and promising, we created a product development department around it and a little later XLT (which stands for Xceptance LoadTest) surfaced as our product offering.

Today XLT is a player in the test automation and performance testing space with many unique features, great flexibility, and results you can trust.

The Facts

  • 2004: Xceptance GmbH founded in Jena
  • 2006: Xceptance Inc. founded in the U.S.
  • 2007: Release of XLT 2.0
  • 2008: Release of XLT 3.0, Xceptance joins the blogging society
  • 2009: 5th anniversary of Xceptance Germany
  • 2011: Release of XLT 4.0, 5th anniversary of Xceptance Inc., Move to our current office in Jena
  • 2014: Release of XLT 4.3, 10th anniversary of Xceptance in Germany

As you can see, Xceptance has come a long way to offer you the best testing services possible! Ten years are an entire decade, but to us it feels like time just flew by and it was only yesterday that the business plan was first drafted. We hope to continue our hard work and we’d like to thank you, our clients and partners, for your confidence and support.

We’re looking forward to the next 10 years (at least)!