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Background & History

Since its founding in 1999 has repeated its mantra of “no software” singularly committing to the “on demand” nature of its applications systems delivery approach. Initial investors in were Larry Ellison, Halsey Minor (Minor was the founder of CNET and also the largest investor as well as silent partner in the development of, Marc Benioff, Magdelana Yelsil and Igor Siller. In June 2004, the company made its initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange under the stock symbol CRM. The stock has performed well tripling in value since the IPO.’s 2008 revenues (at the time of writing) are estimated at $USD 748M and expects to earn $USD 12M in net income. The company began with the provision of a SaaS based CRM (customer relationship management) solution. The primary modules included sales force automation, marketing and customer support. Each successive release of the product added capabilities to support customization and integration with other applications.

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More recently, has focused on driving deeper penetration into the market through a series of initiatives under the banner of “”. packages enabled services into an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that includes a user interface technology called VisualForce. further supports this initiative through a series of solutions developed by third-parties through the AppExchange. Applications that are available run the gamut from Finance & Administration to Marketing. AppExchange partners include Tibco & Informatica (Integration), Appirio (Sync), Intacct (Finance & Accounting) and clickNconnect (Telephony) . These application extensions have been built by these independent software developers using or integrating with the platform.

The applications vary in scope and price depending on the specific solution.
AppExchange extensions are not supported directly by SFDC so it’s important to recognize that your overall solution will have multiple points of accountability under this service.

Some industry pundits have criticized the AppExchange as a method to simply bridge gaps in the core SFDC functionality. While AppExchange is still in a relative infancy, the future will determine its success or failure based on the ability of the applications to seamlessly integrate as SFDC changes the core solution and the longevity of the developers in whom SFDC customers buying into AppExchange place their trust. is headquartered in San Francisco, California, with regional headquarters in Dublin (covering Europe, Middle East, and Africa), Singapore (covering Asia Pacific less Japan), and Tokyo (covering Japan). SFDC reports 43,600 customers and over 1,000,000 users. Published documentation does not disclose the average number of subscribers in each customer. It is however recognized that while touting few large implementations, the predominance of SFDC’s customer base average about 15 seats.

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