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The 20 Coolest Cloud Software Companies Of The 2021 Cloud 100

Here are 20 cloud software companies, from startups to some of the industry’s most established software vendors, that are driving the evolution of cloud software.

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Marc Benioff

Co-Founder, CEO

Salesforce has been one of the pioneering cloud software vendors since its 1999 launch, setting the pace for the industry with its Software-as-a-Service sales force automation/CRM applications and, later, its expanded portfolio of cloud-based marketing, customer service, analytics and other applications.

Perhaps most remarkable is that where many pioneers often flame out after their early years, Salesforce has continued to grow at a breakneck pace. Sales in fiscal 2020 grew 29 percent to $17.1 billion and are expected to exceed $21 billion (for 23 percent year-over-year growth) in the about-to-be-completed fiscal 2021.

What makes Salesforce especially worth watching in 2021 is the company’s Dec.1 deal to acquire collaboration software developer Slack for $27.7 billion—the largest acquisition in Salesforce’s history. The two companies expect to complete the acquisition this year and begin integrating their products: CEO Marc Benioff’s vision is that the Slack application will become the front-end “engagement layer” for the entire Salesforce cloud software portfolio.

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