Salesforce kicked off its annual Dreamforce event today, just hours after announcing it had signed an agreement to acquire cloud-based data management platform Krux. The event, which is expected to draw more than 171,000 attendees this year, will also feature the launch of several enhancements to the company’s partner program along with new tools for its cloud offerings.
“Salesforce’s born-in-the-cloud partner ecosystem is rapidly growing and changing -- partner types are morphing together, new app categories like Lightning components are emerging and partners are increasingly leading digital transformation initiatives with customers,” said Tyler Prince, EVP Alliances and Go-to-Market Innovation, Salesforce. “With these new enhancements to the Salesforce Partner Program announced today, we hope to continue providing our partners with the right tools and resources to grow, thrive and drive customer success.”
The Krux of the Issue
But it is likely the acquisition of Krux that most attendees will be talking about this year. The company, which sells marketing data tools, had already been closely aligned with Salesforce as part of its partner ecosystem. The deal is reported to be worth around $700 million and should help make that integration even deeper.
“Krux will extend the Salesforce Marketing Cloud’s audience segmentation and targeting capabilities to power consumer marketing with even more precision, at scale,” the company wrote on its corporate blog. “In addition, Krux will feed Salesforce Einstein with billions of new signals, enabling companies to be even smarter about their customers.”
Salesforce has been on something of a buying spree lately. This summer saw the company snatch up business analytics platform BeyondCore, ecommerce platform Demandware, and productivity company Quip. It was also believed to be looking into acquiring LinkedIn before Microsoft bought the professional social network. Salesforce is rumored to be considering an acquisition of Twitter as well.
Building Out Partner Apps
Salesforce will also be using its Dreamforce event as an opportunity to promote its AppExchange platform, an app store where partners can sell their own apps. The company is pushing its Lightning tool, which allows users to build apps without using code, and Lightning Bolt, which lets users launch communities, portals or customer-facing websites that integrate with Salesforce.
Salesforce DX, a new developer experience, is also being launched in conjunction with the event. The company will also be unveiling its new Security Review FastTrack, which allows partners to expedite the security review process on AppExchange, with special pre-screening assistance to quickly launch their apps.
AppExchange is also being integrated into the Salesforce interface, allowing customers to search and download partner apps without having to leave the platform.
Salesforce will also be promoting its new Trailhead service, a self-guided learning environment with modules on everything from culture to leadership to Salesforce skills. The company also announced that it is expanding its certification program with two new certifications: System Architect and Application Architect, part of the revamped Certified Architect Framework.