Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff: 'We need to create a new San Francisco'

Posted by Tom Foremski - January 28, 2014

Bravo to Marc Benioff, a fourth generation San Franciscan, in calling out tech firms “making billions of dollars” and challenging them to give something back.

He was quoted by Jon Swartz at USAToday: Commentary: Tech's growing problem in San Francisco

Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff, a fourth-generation San Franciscan … has made Salesforce a model for corporate philanthropy, says he is “dismayed” by the industry's "stinginess."

"Companies are making billions of dollars; they can give back a small percentage of that back," says Benioff, who supports the rights of the protesters. "The homeless, child care and public schools are logical philanthropic targets for tech."

It was in San Francisco, not Silicon Valley, where Salesforce was founded in 1999. He says "200, not 20" local tech companies need to change their attitudes before things become more confrontational.

"This is a city of innovators — the Haas family (Levi Strauss), the Hellmans (Wells Fargo) who helped create industries" while being model corporate citizens, Benioff says."We need to create a new San Francisco, a better San Francisco," he says.

Jessica Guynn and Chris O’Brien at LA Times, reported: Tech industry in San Francisco addresses backlash - latimes.com

It's great that [technology companies are] coming to San Francisco," said Benioff, whose Salesforce.com employs more than 4,000 in the city. "But they need to come part and parcel with a commitment to give back."

Foremski’s Take:

I agree with Benioff. How we do it is by being inclusive, including the tech community and making them part of the solution. Their employers, however, prefer to keep them isolated and the persecution the tech workers now feel in the city, binds them closer to their company culture.

Please see:

San Francisco's Incredible History Of Media Innovation

San Francisco's Culture War With Silicon Valley's Cubicle Culture

San Francisco: An Epicenter Of Creativity

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