Salesforce Ventures is announcing a $50 million fund to invest in “cloud consulting” startups. The corporate venture arm is making a special effort to finance companies that are synergistic to the tech giant’s business.
The team has a “strong commitment to our consulting partners to make sure that we continue to have the partners that we need to grow Salesforce solutions,” said Matt Garratt of Salesforce Ventures.
They’ve already made a few investments from the new SI Trailblazer fund; 7Summits, consulting for the social community space; Arxxus, an Australian provider of Salesforce professional services; and ATG for Quote-to-Cash implementation and advisory.
“These are different businesses that other venture capital firms often don’t invest in,” said Garratt. It’s “such a big opportunity that we are going to be placing multiple bets here.”
For the new initiative, they will be looking at existing Salesforce consulting partners and searching for new ones. Neeracha Taychakhoonavudh, SVP of partner and industry innovation said she is looking to “find opportunities from existing partners and putting together active campaigns to recruit new partners.”
In conjunction with the new fund, they are also launching the SI Trailblazer Alliance Initiative. This a comprehensive suite of services, including sales mentorship and help with implementing Salesforce solutions.
Salesforce Ventures still plans to invest in a broader range of companies outside of this fund, ideally “enterprise cloud companies with the mandate of building the world’s largest ecosystem,” said Garratt. Exited portfolio companies include MuleSoft, Box and Twilio. Garratt claims they are the third-most active corporate venture firm in the U.S.