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Salesforce's Asia-Pacific CEO is leaving as part of a leadership revamp in the region

APAC CEO Ulrik Nehammer is just one of four executives leaving the company.

Salesforce logo

Salesforce is shaking up its leadership in the APAC region.

Photo: Stephen Lam/Getty Images

Salesforce is overhauling its leadership team in the Asia-Pacific region, Protocol has learned.

APAC CEO Ulrik Nehammer, Chief Customer Officer Stan Sugarman, Chief Operating Officer Dan Bognar and EVP Lee Hawksley are all leaving Salesforce, according to a company spokesperson. Nehammer, Sugarman, Hawksley and Bognar did not respond to requests for comment.

At Salesforce, Nehammer led the vision for the whole APAC region. Some of his direct reports will now report to Pip Marlow, the CEO of Salesforce Australia and New Zealand, per the spokesperson. Sugarman was in charge of stimulating growth in the market, a lucrative region that includes China and burgeoning corporate hubs such as India and Singapore. Hawksley helped lead the APAC sales team, while Bogner oversaw operations including sales strategy and workforce development.

It's unclear what prompted the executive revamp. Sales in the region were up 24% year-over-year in the nine months through October to $1.4 billion. That's compared to a 34% revenue growth in Europe and 24% rise in the U.S. in the same time frame to $3.2 billion and $10.7 billion, respectively. Overall, the APAC region accounted for roughly 10% of Salesforce's total revenue in the last full fiscal year.

The shakeup comes nearly 10 months after former co-CEO Keith Block left Salesforce, a departure that led to Gavin Patterson assuming the role of CEO of Salesforce International, which includes Europe, Latin America and Asia. It also comes shortly after the company laid off roughly 1,000 employees across the globe, including in the Singapore office, Salesforce's regional APAC headquarters.

More recently, Salesforce made the splashy $27.7 billion purchase of workplace collaboration provider Slack, the company's most expensive acquisition to date. It's generally viewed as a move by CEO Marc Benioff to more directly challenge Microsoft and its Teams platform in the lucrative and increasingly competitive workplace collaboration marketplace.

Some analysts and industry experts praised the deal and labeled it a key opportunity for Salesforce to expand beyond customer relations management software. Others have raised concerns that the acquisition might signal that organic growth is slowing, a point underscored by a major sell-off of Salesforce's stock in the days following the announcement of the purchase.

Ultimately, Slack could be a key driver to help Benioff achieve his lofty goal of reaching $60 billion in annual revenue by 2034.

Protocol | Workplace

Apple isn’t the only tech company spooked by the Delta variant

Spooked by rising cases of COVID-19, many tech companies delay their office reopening.

Apple and at least two other Silicon Valley companies have decided to delay their reopenings in response to rising COVID-19 case counts.

Photo: Luis Alvarez via Getty

Apple grabbed headlines this week when it told employees it would delay its office reopening until October or later. But the iPhone maker wasn't alone: At least two other Silicon Valley companies decided to delay their reopenings last week in response to rising COVID-19 case counts.

Both ServiceNow and Pure Storage opted to push back their September return-to-office dates last week, telling employees they can work remotely until at least the end of the year. Other companies may decide to exercise more caution given the current trends.

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Allison Levitsky
Allison Levitsky is a reporter at Protocol covering workplace issues in tech. She previously covered big tech companies and the tech workforce for the Silicon Valley Business Journal. Allison grew up in the Bay Area and graduated from UC Berkeley.

As President of Alibaba Group, I am often asked, "What is Alibaba doing in the U.S.?"

In fact, most people are not aware we have a business in the U.S. because we are not a U.S. consumer-facing service that people use every day – nor do we want to be. Our consumers – nearly 900 million of them – are located in China.

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J. Michael Evans
Michael Evans leads and executes Alibaba Group's international strategy for globalizing the company and expanding its businesses outside of China.
Protocol | Workplace

Half of working parents have felt discriminated against during COVID

A new survey found that working parents at the VP level are more likely to say they've faced discrimination at work than their lower-level counterparts.

A new survey looks at discrimination faced by working parents during the pandemic.

Photo: d3sign/Getty Images

The toll COVID-19 has taken on working parents — particularly working moms — is, by now, well-documented. The impact for parents in low-wage jobs has been particularly devastating.

But a new survey, shared exclusively with Protocol, finds that among parents who kept their jobs through the pandemic, people who hold more senior positions are actually more likely to say they faced discrimination at work than their lower-level colleagues.

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Issie Lapowsky

Issie Lapowsky ( @issielapowsky) is Protocol's chief correspondent, covering the intersection of technology, politics, and national affairs. She also oversees Protocol's fellowship program. Previously, she was a senior writer at Wired, where she covered the 2016 election and the Facebook beat in its aftermath. Prior to that, Issie worked as a staff writer for Inc. magazine, writing about small business and entrepreneurship. She has also worked as an on-air contributor for CBS News and taught a graduate-level course at New York University's Center for Publishing on how tech giants have affected publishing.

Protocol | Enterprise

Alphabet goes deep into industrial robotic software with Intrinsic

If it succeeds, the gambit could help support Google Cloud's lofty ambitions in the manufacturing sector.

Alphabet is aiming to make advanced robotic technology affordable to customers.

Photo: Getty Images

Alphabet launched a new division Friday called Intrinsic, which will focus on building software for industrial robots, per a blog post. The move plunges the tech giant deeper into a sector that's in the midst of a major wave of digitization.

The goal of Intrinsic is to "give industrial robots the ability to sense, learn, and automatically make adjustments as they're completing tasks, so they work in a wider range of settings and applications," CEO Wendy Tan-White wrote in the post.

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Joe Williams

Joe Williams is a senior reporter at Protocol covering enterprise software, including industry giants like Salesforce, Microsoft, IBM and Oracle. He previously covered emerging technology for Business Insider. Joe can be reached at JWilliams@Protocol.com. To share information confidentially, he can also be contacted on a non-work device via Signal (+1-309-265-6120) or JPW53189@protonmail.com.

People

To combat disinformation, centralize moderation

There's more to content moderation than deplatforming.

In addition to interplatform collaboration, big tech companies would also benefit from greater collaborations with academic researchers, government agencies or other private entities, the authors argue.

Image: Twitter

Yonatan Lupu is an associate professor of political science and international affairs at George Washington University. Nicolás Velasquez Hernandez is a lecturer at the Elliott School of International Affairs and a postdoctoral researcher at GW's Institute for Data, Democracy and Politics.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' signing of a bill that penalizes social media companies for deplatforming politicians was yet another salvo in an escalating struggle over the growth and spread of digital disinformation, malicious content and extremist ideology. While Big Tech, world leaders and policymakers — along with many of us in the research community — all recognize the importance of mitigating online and offline harm, agreement on how best to do that is few and far between.

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