Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff: How to be successful when the world thinks you’ll fail

Kimberly White / Stringer

Salesforce, a 19-year-old cloud software company worth $85 billion that has 30,000 employees, brought in $10 billion last year and hopes to have $60 billion in revenue by 2034.

But success in Salesforce’s early days was hardly a given, its founders, Marc Benioff and Parker Harris, told me during an on-stage interview last week at TrailheaDX, Salesforce’s developer conference in San Francisco.

Salesforce launched in 1999, at the height of the internet bubble. About a year later, that bubble burst, and the “dot-com” startups – companies founded to sell stuff online – found themselves running out of money with nowhere to turn.

“If you look at our history, it looks amazing, but there were some hard times,” Harris said. “There was a lot of work; it wasn’t all easy.”

Click here to read Business Insider PRIME, and Benioff and Harris’ discussion about defying the naysayers and building an $85 billion company.