Or, Why You Should Cut a Joint Venture with Your Cloud Platform Partner
Last week, I spent some time with Jeremy Roche, CEO, of Financial Force.com. This is the new entity created by Saleforce.com and Unit 4/Agresso to market the former Coda2Go financial software product line.
When I first chatted with Jeremy, it was early in the week and before the Dreamforce activities really cranked up. Later, I met with him Thursday just moments before I left the event. My opinion about Financial Force changed materially in that time. Here’s why.
1) In three different sessions, companies that were users of Salesforce.com’s CRM products or users of all new applications they had built using Salesforce.com’s Force.com architecture indicated that they had outgrown their current financial software solutions and would be checking in with Jeremy specifically or Financial Force.com in general for new software.
2) Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com, even offered, publicly, to introduce two different executives in different plenary sessions to Financial Force/Jeremy to help them with their financial software needs.
3) A panel of four Financial Force.com customers was anything but demure in their praise for the product and the very, very short time it took to implement.
So, what should this mean for Financial Force.com and its owners? I believe it’s a pretty rosy future for now unless they have some sort of service meltdown. Honestly, every customer at that show knew that Financial Force.com is the top-end financial software vendor of record for the Force.com platform. Many of them also know that Financial Force.com is a joint venture that Salesforce.com has a stake in and supports.
So, if Financial Force.com only markets to the Salesforce.com customer base, they’ve got a huge built-in market waiting for them for the next couple of years. That’s a great problem to have. Jeremy’s biggest challenge will be secure more of the mid-to-high end customers within that market segment as that’s the old Coda sweet spot.
Let’s see how they perform.