A Brief Background on Salesforce.com

A Brief Background on Salesforce.com

You may use salesforce.com services in your organization, but how much do you know about the company behind the CRM services? Salesforce.com is not a brand new player in the CRM realm, but it’s also not ‘ancient’ (in tech world terms) like companies like Oracle (1977) or SAP (1973). Salesforce.com was founded in 1999 by Mark Benioff (the current CEO), Parker Harris, Dave Moellenhoff and Frank Dominguez. When the company was getting started, Marc Benioff evangelized a new concept at the time called “software as a service” in which the software is centrally hosted and then licensed out to users on a subscription basis. This was proven to be a successful business model for Salesforce.com and one that has been copied by many other companies.

CRM ticker Symbol In 2004, Salesforce.com went public, under the ticker symbol, “CRM.” Since then, the company has grown drastically. Cloud computing has revolutionized the way that businesses manage and organize information in the CRM space and beyond. In the past 10 years, the stock price of Salesforce.com has increased a whopping 1200%. Today Salesforce.com have 13,300 employees, a customer base of 100,000 companies and 2.1 million users. In 2014, Salesforce.com had more than $4 billion in revenue and were ranked the world’s most innovative company by Forbes.


service cloud CRM

Today, Salesforce.com is so much more than just a CRM company. They have grown to offer a broad array of business services. For example, Pardot, which was acquired when Salesforce.com bought ExactTarget for 2.5 billion dollars in 2013, moved the company into the marketing automation space. According to the Pardot website, “Pardot offers a software-as-a-service marketing automation application that allows marketing and sales departments to create, deploy, and manage online marketing campaigns that increase revenue and maximize efficiency.”  Pardot is just one example of a service Salesforce is offering, which is the result of a newly acquired company. Since 2006, Salesforce.com has acquired over 30 companies. The following is a list of all Salesforce.com acquisitions since 2006:


  • Sendia (April 2006) – now Salesforce Classic
  • Kieden (August 2006) – now Salesforce for Google Adwords
  • Kenlet (January 2007) – now relaunched as Salesforce Ideas
  • Koral (March 2007) – now Salesforce Content
  • Instranet (August 2008) for $31.5 million – now re-branded to Salesforce Knowledge
  • GroupSwim (December 2009) – now part of Salesforce Chatter
  • Informavores (December 2009) – now re-branded to Visual Workflow
  • Jigsaw Data Corp. (April 2010), – now known as Data.com
  • Sitemasher (June 2010) – now known as Site.com
  • Navajo Security (August 2011)
  • Activa Live Chat (September 2010) – now known as Salesforce Live Agent
  • Heroku (December 2010)
  • Etacts (December 2010)
  • Dimdim (January 2011)
  • Manymoon (February 2011) – now known as Do.com
  • Radian6 (March 2011)
  • Assistly (September 21, 2011) – now known as Desk.com
  • Model Metrics (November 2011)
  • Rypple (December 2011) – now known as Work.com
  • Stypi (May 2012)
  • Buddy Media (May 2012) for US$689 million
  • ChoicePass (June 2012)
  • Thinkfuse (June 2012)
  • BlueTail (July 2012) – now part of Data.com
  • GoInstant (July 2012) for US$70 million
  • Prior Knowledge (December 2012)
  • EntropySoft (February 2013) for an undisclosed sum.
  • clipboard.com (May 2013) for US$12 million
  • ExactTarget (announced June 4, 2013) for US$2.5 billion
  • EdgeSpring (June 7, 2013)
  • RelateIQ (July 10, 2014) for US$390 million

Scott Thomas