16 power players leading Salesforce’s charge against Microsoft now that its $27.7 billion Slack acquisition has finally closed (CRM, WORK)

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Summary List Placement

After many months of waiting and regulatory reviews, Salesforce closed its $27.7 billion deal to buy Slack on Wednesday. 

The mega-deal — Salesforce’s largest to-date — is set to help the firm on its path to achieving one of CEO Marc Benioff’s decades-long goals: to transform Salesforce from a CRM tool into a comprehensive hub for productivity and collaboration for business people. 

It’s also expected to present a new competitive challenge to Microsoft, which has long dominated the productivity software market with apps like Word, Excel, and, more recently, its chat product Teams.

Salesforce COO Bret Taylor was key to bringing the Slack deal to fruition, thanks to his long relationship with Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield (both are entrepreneurs in the collaboration space) and Butterfield will remain CEO of Slack as it becomes an independent operating unit of Salesforce.

In addition to Taylor and Butterfield, several executives from both Salesforce and Slack will be key to driving Salesforce’s collaboration strategy forward. 

Insider dug through company leadership pages and Salesforce’s organizational chart — and asked Taylor and Butterfield to find weigh in — to discover which execs from Salesforce and Slack will help drive the organization’s overall collaboration strategy. 

Here are the 16 leading the charge:

Bret Taylor, Salesforce chief operating officer

Chief operating officer Bret Taylor played a key role in bringing the Slack deal to fruition. He has known Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield for years and both have a background in collaboration software.

Taylor joined the company in 2016, when it acquired his word processor startup Quip. Right away, he reported directly to CEO Marc Benioff, which is rare for startup CEOs after their company is acquired. Soon after, in 2017, Taylor made the leap to the C-Suite as the president and chief product officer, before his latest promotion to COO in December 2019. He now oversees global product vision, engineering, security, marketing, and communications. 

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He is also widely considered to be the Benioff’s eventual successor.

Taylor is spearheading Salesforce future product strategy and alongside Butterfield, he will play a key role in shaping Salesforce’s future collaboration strategy.

“We really have this vision for Slack and our platform — which is called Customer 360 — really representing, ‘How do you find growth in sales and customer service and marketing and commerce in this all-digital, work-anywhere world?” he said in an interview after the deal closed. “There is no company that has defined that future of work more than Slack.”

Prior to Quip, Taylor was Facebook’s chief technology officer and helped lead the company through its IPO in 2012 — and gets the credit for creating its “Like” button. Before that, he was at he helped create Google Maps.

Sarah Franklin, Salesforce chief marketing officer

Sarah Franklin was promoted to chief marketing officer after Stephanie Buscemi stepped down from the role in January. She’s a 13 year company veteran who has been key to Salesforce’s growth.

Previously she was executive VP and general manager of Platform, Trailhead & Developers, overseeing the company’s …read more

Source:: Businessinsider – Tech

      

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