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Salesforce’s Benioff Says SAP’s Troubles Are ‘Unique to Them’

Nico Grant
·1 min read

(Bloomberg) -- Salesforce.com Inc. Chief Executive Officer Marc Benioff criticized rival SAP SE’s business performance in stark terms, rejecting the notion that the German software giant’s challenges are an omen for his company.

At “SAP, you can see they’re having very significant troubles with the CEO transition they’re going through,” Benioff said Monday in a Bloomberg Television interview. “They, as you know, moved from one CEO to two, they fired one of those two CEOs. The CEO transition is just not going well and their customers are saying that. Now you can see that their revenues are also reflecting this trouble.”

Benioff, the co-founder of San Francisco-based Salesforce, used to needle mature rivals such as Oracle Corp. and Microsoft Corp. in his company’s early days. Since Salesforce has become a market leader in cloud-based applications, he generally avoids directly criticizing his competitors. But on Monday, investor concern over SAP’s decision to cut its full-year forecast helped drag down other software makers, including Salesforce. Benioff seemed keen to set the record straight that his German foe’s troubles shouldn’t be seen as relevant for the entire software industry.

“They have not executed the cloud opportunity well,” Benioff said. “SAP’s troubles, I think, are unique to them.”

In August, Salesforce reported quarterly sales increased 29% and raised in its revenue forecast for the year. “Our market share continues to grow,” Benioff said.

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