Acquia Releases Lightning for Drupal 8, Enabling Fast Starts for Digital Experience Deployments

Open Source Distribution Accelerates Drupal 8 Projects, Offers Intuitive Authoring and Streamlined Workflows for Enterprise Organizations

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwired - Jul 19, 2016) - Acquia, the digital experience company, today announced the launch of Acquia Lightning, a freely available open source distribution of Drupal that accelerates Drupal 8 development, streamlines authoring for business users, and make it easy for non-technical users to manage content and experiences. It serves as the perfect starter kit for Drupal 8, bringing together critical functionality for enterprise-scale delivery of digital experiences. The Acquia Lightning distribution is available on Acquia Cloud Free, where developers can start building with Drupal 8 today.

The proliferation of new devices and channels along with the rapidly growing expectations for mobile experiences raises the stakes for developers and builders of digital experiences. Drupal 8 provides digital experience management capabilities built for the future of the web. It offers a simplified user experience and tools that empower builders to create highly personalized and mobile experiences. Today's launch of Acquia Lightning makes it easy for organizations to get started fast with Drupal 8, shaving weeks or months off development projects.

"Lightning solves problems that would otherwise slow the development of content-rich websites on Drupal. I like that we can now focus less on overcoming technology hurdles and more on client needs," said Jill Moraca, manager of Web Development Services in the Office of Information Technology at Princeton University, which participated in the beta trial of Acquia Lightning. "Using Lightning makes getting started on new web development projects faster and easier. Our developers and content creators are excited about the future of Lightning."

Lightning helps organizations quickly build and customize four key components of digital experience delivery that all marketing and editorial teams require:

  • Drag-and-drop Layout: Create flexible, responsive layouts so everyone can be a site builder and create pages and experiences without developer intervention
  • Media Management: Create, upload, embed, and manage social media and digital assets
  • Content Workflow: Configure content workflows to streamline review and ensure editorial quality and add governance and control for publishing
  • Experience Preview: Conduct a comprehensive review before publishing content, campaigns, and cross-channel experiences

Agencies use Acquia Lightning as the starting point for Drupal 8 projects. It provides a ready best practice for launching new initiatives, reduces complexity and speeds time to market.

"Acquia Lightning establishes an industry-standard starting point for Drupal 8 projects and solves many of the most common early challenges in any Drupal development projects," said Karl Kedrovsky, solutions architect, VML. "Using Lightning allows us to build the basics fast and focus on the work that will differentiate our project and drive value for our clients."

Software architect Mike Potter of Phase2 said, "Phase2 uses Lightning to make our client's Drupal 8 projects more efficient and it allow us to focus our resources on custom features key to the client's success."

Acquia Lightning brings together key modules that together support the four functional areas of layout, media management, content workflow, and experience preview. Members of the Drupal community build and maintain the modules that extend core Drupal functionality. Several Lightning modules were developed under the support of Acquia's Module Acceleration Program, which coordinates and funds initiatives to accelerate development across the Drupal 8 ecosystem. Lightning is the most installed Drupal 8 distribution, according to

"With Lightning, Acquia has done the work of providing a tightly integrated distribution that conforms to security best practices, enabling organizations to move faster in developing new applications on Drupal 8," said Chris Stone, chief product officer, Acquia. "Developers can create powerful, easy-to-use publishing tools for their editorial and content teams, with drag and drop layouts, media management, configurable workflows and preview capabilities that make digital experience delivery come together. Hundreds of sites are already using Acquia Lightning, and we estimate Lightning removes 20 percent of the time required for every new Drupal 8 development project."

Learn more about Acquia Lightning at, view the recorded webinar, "Lightning Distribution for Drupal," co-presented by Acquia's John Kennedy and Adam Balsam, and follow the latest development news from Acquia at Get started with Lightning today with Acquia Cloud Free. Acquia Lightning is also available for download from, GitHub, or as part of a Composer-based installer.

About Acquia
Acquia is the digital experience company. The BBC, Cisco, Stanford University, and the Australian Government are among the more than 4,000 organizations that are transforming their digital businesses with Acquia's open cloud platform. Global 2000 enterprises, government agencies and NGOs rely on Acquia to create new revenue streams, lower costs, and engage audiences more deeply through content, community, commerce, and context.

For more information visit or call +1 617 588 9600.

Contact Information:

Media Contacts:
Erica Orthmann or Genevieve Gadenne
acquia (at)
+1 617 945 1915

Christopher Rogers
Acquia (at)
+1 617 588 7775