I am so excited about this week’s announcement of our extraordinary new board members and thought I’d offer a behind-the-scenes look.
To give you a flavor of these three new team members, Aaref Hilaly is a former CEO – for that matter, he was my CEO at a former company so I know how much operational experience and wisdom he brings to every discussion. He is now a partner at Sequoia Capital, which I will diplomatically say is one of the top 3 venture capital firms in the Silicon Valley. Mark Gainey is a hyper-entrepreneur. He founded enterprise software leader Kana Communications and now serves as co-founder and CEO of Strava, the leading online network for athletes – just because he embraced the challenge of a new type of business. I trust Mark for daily insights and savvy coaching. And Enrique Salem spent 19 years at Symantec, including as CEO. President Obama’s administration appointed Enrique to the President’s Management Advisory Board because few others match Enrique’s long-term vision and ability to think at a global scale. Together, they are a dream team addition.
A question I’ve gotten is why Clari would want (or be able to attract) such a strong board so early in our life. The short answer is: our mission requires it. The CRM market is over $18 billion today. That may sound like a staggering number, but let me put it in a different context. The revenue of just the top 1,000 companies in U.S. is $35 trillion. With a ‘T.’ And the combination of data science and mobile access is going to disrupt that $18 billion and make the next $35 trillion a whole lot easier and more efficient.
Clari will be one of the two or three companies most responsible for advancing CRM – and enterprise selling overall – and we are in it for the long-haul.
That commitment takes excellence in every role, from a management and founding team of veterans to rock stars in and out of engineering and yes, to an enviable Board of Directors.
We believe a commitment to transforming an industry also means working with the companies transforming their own industries. So we are delighted to count among our earliest customers companies we respect as leaders – companies like Aruba, Cisco, VMware, and Box. We’re gratified how they tell us two things about their experience with Clari.
First, their reps are clamoring for our product. All of us in the sales world know this is a far cry from the usual response to a new sales tool in the enterprise. Second, managers now have unheard-of visibility into progress and results in the field — allowing them to closed deals faster and drive more business.
I couldn’t be happier to have Aaref, Enrique, and Mark linking arms with us on the journey. And if you’re reading this post – whether a customer, a prospect, the future team member, or even a competitor – we look forward to joining you on the journey too.