5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

The Week Ending March 2

Topping this week's roundup of companies that came to win is Salesforce.com, which in its just completed fiscal 2018 reached CEO Marc Benioff's goal of $10 billion in annual revenue and is now striving for $20 billion.

Also making the list this week are Microsoft and Intel for their latest steps to develop fixes for the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities, Juniper Networks for launching a wave of new products that boosts the company's competitive stance against Cisco, mobile security vendor Zimperium for its plans to grow channel sales to 80 percent of its total revenue, and big data startup Iguazio for launching its inaugural partner program.

Not everyone in the IT industry was making smart moves this week, of course. For a rundown of companies that were unfortunate, unsuccessful or just didn't make good decisions, check out this week's Five Companies That Had A Rough Week roundup.

Salesforce Sets Its Sights On Becoming A $20 Billion Company

Salesforce.com founder and CEO Marc Benioff has long vowed to be the first cloud company to reach $10 billion in revenue and the fastest software company to reach that sales milestone. This week, after achieving those goals, Benioff said he's now shooting to quickly grow to $20 billion.

And based on the blowout results announced this week for Salesforce.com's fiscal 2018 fourth quarter (ended Jan. 31), it might not take the company all that long to get there.

Benioff told Wall Street investors that Salesforce closed the quarter with total bookings already exceeding $20 billion. The company, which derives revenue through cloud service subscriptions, has deferred $7.09 billion in revenue and has almost double that amount ($13.3 billion) in bookings yet to be billed.

"Now our vision has never been bigger or more exciting as we have a very clear trajectory to $20 billion in revenue," Benioff said. "It's our dream to get to $20 billion faster than anyone else."

Intel, Microsoft Make Major Strides With New Mitigations For Spectre And Meltdown

Software giant Microsoft and chipmaker Intel both win applause for releasing software and firmware updates to fix the Spectre and Meltdown processor vulnerabilities – further evidence that major IT vendors are bringing the Spectre/Meltdown crisis under control.

Microsoft announced Thursday the availability of software and firmware/microcode updates against Spectre and Meltdown for versions of Windows 10 and for devices running the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update and Intel's Skylake sixth-generation processors.

Earlier in the week Intel released microcode updates aimed at mitigating the Spectre vulnerability in two of its older processor lines, Broadwell and Haswell. An earlier attempt at a Spectre fix for the chips had bugs that caused "unpredictable system behavior" in some systems and had to be rolled back.

Juniper Takes Aim At Cisco With Huge Multi-Cloud Portfolio Expansion

Juniper Networks went on the competitive offensive this week, unleashing a slew of new switches, services and a subscription-based purchasing model for its SD-WAN system as it moves to establish a secure, flexible, end-to-end multi-cloud product portfolio.

The expanded product lineup puts Juniper in a more competitive posture against network industry heavyweight Cisco Systems and other competitors. It also provides a more comprehensive, and yet simpler, solution for Juniper's channel partners.

The new products include data center switches, campus-oriented switches, a new network services platform for branch offices, subscription-based pricing for the Contrail SD-WAN system, the Sky Enterprise cloud management service, and new line cards for secure workload transitions between data centers.

Mobile Security Vendor Zimperium's New CRO Makes Channel Business A Priority

New Zimperium chief revenue officer Eric Grotefeld wants to grow the channel's share of the mobile security company's sales from their current 50 percent to 80 percent within a couple of years, the executive told CRN this week.

Under Grotefeld Zimperium will reward direct and channel sales teams equally to maximize synergy between the two operations and drive support for the channel organization. He also plans to boost channel headcount around the world and increase the company's engagement in partner marketing activities.

Zimperium already works with global telecom service providers and VARs. In addition to strengthening those routes to market, Grotofeld plans to partner with more systems integrators.

Grotefeld started at Zimperium in mid-January, joining the Dallas-based company from CA Technologies where he led the vendor's strategic DevOps business unit.

"We see being a heavily channel-oriented company as fundamental to the success of our whole business," Grotefeld told CRN exclusively. "We can bring more value to our customers together rather than alone."

Big Data Startup Iguazio Debuts Its First Channel Program, Recruits VARs And Systems Integrators

Startup Iguazio, which develops a unified data system for collecting and analyzing data from multiple sources, wins applause this week for launching its inaugural channel program.

The company is recruiting partners, particularly VARs, OEMs and systems integrators, to help it expand sales of its Continuous Data Platform into new regions and new vertical markets. The Israel-based company is also seeking strategic service providers with the skills and security clearances needed to sell to U.S. government agencies.

"It's basically scale-up time for the business and the best way to scale is through partners and the channel," said CEO Asaf Somekh in an interview with CRN.