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The NWC Interview: Salesforce.com's Marc Benioff


Mark Benioff
CEO, Salesforce.com

Salesforce.com has been pretty successful as a CRM vendor, but wildly successful as the embodiment of the idea of software as a service. Did you always see Salesforce as being about more than CRM, the way Jeff Bezos always saw Amazon.com as being about more than books?

Amazon is a great example. It was in 1996, when I was at Oracle working with Amazon, that I asked myself a simple question: Why can't all enterprise software be like this? And why at Oracle are we still building our enterprise software as if the Internet itself doesn't exist? That is really why I quit my job and started Salesforce.com.

Do you have plans to get into any other vertical application segments?

We have already entered quite a few, through AppExchange.com. That's a service we introduced in January, where we kind of popped the top off to let others write applications. We now have more than 300 on-demand applications and more than 200 ISVs that have published applications on top of AppExchange. It's a place companies can go to find on-demand applications and with one click, start using them.

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