For the past 10 years Salesforce Ventures, Salesforce’s global corporate investment arm, has invested in more than 300 companies in 20 countries. In 2018, we completed a record 95 investments and, for the second year in a row, invested more outside of California than within the state.
Just recently, we were also named the number two most active corporate venture capital firm globally. As part of our commitment to create the world’s largest ecosystem of enterprise cloud companies to fuel customer success, in 2018 we launched regional funds focused on Canada and Japan.
In 2018, 75% of Salesforce Ventures investments were outside of California.
Today, I’m very excited to be sharing that Salesforce Ventures will be adding Australia to that list by announcing our new Salesforce Ventures $50m Australia Trailblazer Fund! It’s a new $50 million fund aimed at empowering Australian startups in the Salesforce ecosystem.
In my six years with Salesforce Ventures, I have been lucky to partner with incredible start-ups and ambitious entrepreneurs, including innovative companies here in Australia such as Arxxus, Autopilot, Bugcrowd, Sqware Peg, and Australia PitchComp 2017 and 2018 winners Practifi and SocialSuite – I can’t wait to see that continue with the Australia Trailblazer fund.
We have seen the tremendous potential that exists here, and my team and I are looking forward to exploring it further and in greater depth.
Almost half of Australian startups are trying to raise funds to get their ideas off the ground and into market. And of those startups 45% are looking to deliver SaaS products.
If these startups can secure financing and scale, a quarter of the Australian economy will likely be directly impacted by software by 2025 – $524 billion of GDP.
There is no limit to what these startups can achieve with the right support and direction. This is the journey we’re joining our Australian startup partners on today.
I’m often asked what Salesforce Ventures looks for when we make an investment. As a strategic investor, we invest in enterprise software companies that are relevant to the Salesforce ecosystem. For example, last year we invested in AI-enabled apps, industry verticals, open source, AR/VR and solutions for developers. Our goal is to partner with our portfolio companies to help them accelerate their growth and make our joint customers more successful.
So when you reach out to us, we recommend that you come to us with a perspective on Salesforce and how you believe we can work together. That’s really helpful and a thoughtful way of approaching Salesforce Ventures. Put yourself in our shoes and ask how you can make as big an impact as possible.
Our Australia Trailblazer Fund is all about investing in innovation. We want to inspire Australian entrepreneurs to create next-generation technology that drives customer success across industries and benefits all Australians. We’re glad to be a part of Australia’s continued evolution as an innovation powerhouse.
If you are an enterprise technology startup in Australia, we want to hear from you. Visit the Salesforce Ventures website to share your details with us and remember to follow us on Twitter (@salesforceVC) and LinkedIn for the latest news and insights.
You can also check out this interview with Rob Keith, Salesforce Ventures' Head of Australia and one of the first three employees on the Ventures team, who is moving from the San Francisco Bay Area to Sydney, Australia to oversee the fund.