We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Salesforce.com set to launch Dropbox competitor, identity management app

CEO Marc Benioff revealed the news Tuesday during a TechCrunch event

Salesforce.com is getting ready to roll out a competing product to popular file-sharing and online storage service Dropbox as well as an identity management system that could rival companies like Okta, CEO Marc Benioff revealed Tuesday during an onstage interview at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco.

"Our customers have come to us and said we want a Dropbox for the enterprise," Benioff said. "So we have to step up."

The product will be called Chatterbox, a name that echoes Salesforce.com's Chatter collaboration tool. It's set for discussion during the company's Dreamforce conference, which starts next week.

Also on deck is Salesforce.com Identity, which, like Okta, provides single sign-on for multiple cloud applications at once. "Our customers have asked us to do the same thing," Benioff said.

It wasn't clear whether the new products would become generally available next week, or simply unveiled in more detail.

Benioff's revelations added to what will be a packed agenda at Dreamforce, where Salesforce.com is also expected to discuss its new Work.com human resources software and a new Marketing Cloud.

Also Tuesday, Benioff revealed that he considered purchasing enterprise collaboration vendor Yammer, which was acquired by Microsoft for US$1.2 billion.

While Benioff is a "huge fan" of Yammer CEO David Sacks as well as the product, "why sell when things are going great," he said. "That's not the decision that I would have made. They still have a lot of work to do on their app to make it more of a platform."

Still, Benioff confirmed that at one point he contemplated throwing in a bid for Yammer, but felt the technology would be too redundant.

"It's just that we have done so much [with Chatter]," he said. "Our customers are invested so much with Chatter, how would we bring the two together?"

More than 70,000 people are registered to attend Dreamforce, according to Benioff. Attendees can get into the event's keynotes at no charge.

Special guests will include motivational speaker Tony Robbins. Benioff recounted a recent outing with Robbins in Fiji, where he and a group of other people jumped off a tall bridge into a flowing river at Robbins' urging in order to "face their fears."

There won't be a similar event at Dreamforce, but that's not to say Robbins has nothing in store. "We're planning to get everyone to walk across [hot] coals," Benioff said.

At one point, interviewer Michael Arrington referenced Benioff's love of Hawaii and asked whether he approved of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison's recent purchase of an island there.

Benioff and Ellison have a long history of public back-and-forth, but on Tuesday Benioff was fairly restrained.

"As long as he's not on the island that I'm on, it's OK with me," Benioff said.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is [email protected]


IDG UK Sites

Best Christmas 2014 UK tech deals, Boxing Day 2014 UK tech deals & January sales 2015 UK tech...

IDG UK Sites

Apple's 2014 highlights: the most significant Apple news of 2014

IDG UK Sites

Watch this heartwarming Christmas short by Trunk for composer John Rutter

IDG UK Sites

Ultimate iOS 8 Tips: 35 awesome and advanced tips for using iOS 8 on iPhone and iPad