Salesforce’s Benioff is creating a buzz in downtown SF right after the Dreamforce threat

Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, walks with Lynne Benioff at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 13, 2023 in Idaho.

Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, walks with Lynne Benioff at the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 13, 2023 in Idaho.

Kevin Deitch/Getty Images

The billionaire downtown CEO bragged in his opening remarks on Salesforce’s quarterly earnings call Wednesday night, generated hype for the Dreamforce conference — scheduled for Sept. 12-14 at Moscone Center — and even sparked an unreported real estate announcement: A major startup in the field of artificial intelligence by leasing an office building formerly occupied by Slack.

“I look forward to welcoming each of you to Dreamforce,” he told analysts and investors on the phone. “I’m at the top of the Salesforce Tower in San Francisco right now. We’re going to bring you here. We’ll take you through Moscone. We’ll show you the amazing downtown.”


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In keeping with the conference theme and broader industry appetite, he devoted a large portion of his comments to AI. Salesforce has a $500 million fund to invest in AI startups, and the company has already poured money into several companies, including Anthropic, Cohere, and Hugging Face. Benioff shared the news about an AI startup leasing one of Salesforce’s old Slack buildings — SFGATE reports that Slack has offered to sublease 200,000 square feet at 45 Fremont Street and moved workers out of its 230,000 square foot office at 500 Howard Street. in feb.

“I’m not allowed to say who, but I couldn’t be more excited about it because we’re already seeing downtown San Francisco become an AI hub,” Benioff said.

He also praised OpenAI’s revenue pace of $1 billion per year, as reported by the information“It’s great to see this growth, and I’m especially proud to have them here in our home city of San Francisco, which has become the #1 AI city in the world. Very excited about our city.”

Benioff added that he “can’t wait” to show attendees “what’s happening in Salesforce, what’s happening in AI, what’s happening in San Francisco.”


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The billionaire’s comments are part of an ongoing theme; The CEO has long linked his huge client management software company to the city in which it was founded. But it represented a significant course correction compared to the previous day.

In an interview Tuesday with San Francisco ChronicleBenioff said the Dreamforce conference scheduled for September, which is scheduled to bring 40,000 people to the city, could be the last in San Francisco if the conference is “affected by the current situation of homelessness and substance abuse.” (The Chronicle and SFGATE are both owned by Hearst, but they have separate newsrooms.)

The city has struggled with an ongoing homelessness crisis and drug overdose emergency this year, and tech leaders in particular have been sincere in their concerns about downtown San Francisco. Benioff to publish After the 2022 conference no safety incidents have been reported.

An analyst from Goldman Sachs noted Dreamforce’s threat not to return to San Francisco during the question period on Wednesday’s call, but Benioff did not respond to comment in his answer.


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Have you heard of anything happening at Salesforce or another tech company? Contact Technical Reporter Stephen Council securely at or Signal at 628-204-5452.

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