Magento is an open source e-commerce web application that was launched on March 31, 2008 under the name Bento. It was developed by Varien (now Magento, a division of eBay) with help from the programmers within the open source community but is now owned solely by eBay Inc. Magento was built using parts of the Zend Framework. It uses the entity-attribute-value (EAV) database model to store data. In November 2013, W3Techs estimated that Magento was used by 0.9% of all websites.
Varien, the company owning Magento, formerly worked with osCommerce. They had originally planned to fork osCommerce but later decided to rewrite it as Bento. Due in part to a naming conflict with FileMaker Inc. who had already trademarked the name Bento, Varien and osCommerce renamed Bento to Magento, a mix of Bento and Mage. The term Mage is said to pay homage to the Mage or Wizard of traditional D&D style role playing games. The Varien programming community often refer to Magento’s magical getter and setter commands as “The Will of the Mage”.
Magento officially started development in early 2007. Seven months later, on August 31, 2007, the first public beta version was released. In February 2011, eBay announced it had made an investment in Magento in 2010, worth a 49% ownership share of the company. As of June 6, 2011 eBay owns 100% of Magento. eBay announced that Magento would join eBay’s new X.Commerce initiative. Magento’s CEO and co-founder Roy Rubin wrote on the Magento blog stating that “Magento will continue to operate out of Los Angeles, with Yoav Kutner and me as its leaders.”.