Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff Gave Up App Store Trademark In Exchange For Advice From Steve Jobs
Bloomberg has released an interview with Salesforce.com, Inc. (NYSE:CRM) CEO Marc Benioff. Benioff shared an anecdote of how Apple chairman Steve Jobs gave him advice about Enterprise Software.
He has probably given me more help and more advice than just about anybody. And when I get in trouble and I kinda get lost in my own vision, I’ve been fortunate to be able to go and see him and he’s been willing to show me the future a couple times.
He then goes on to explain how in 2003 Jobs praised Salesforce’s “fantastic enterprise application” and advised him to dream bigger and think about the wider “ecosystem”. Salesforce took it at face value and built an app store of sorts dubbed App Exchange. However, they loved the app store term so much that they bought a URL and trademarked it. Benioff was later in the audience when Jobs announced the App Store. Where more than a few sue-happy companies would see a lawsuit opportunity, Benioff went up to Jobs and said, “I’m gonna give you the trademark and the URL because of the help you gave me in 2003.”
What makes this news interesting is that Apple is suing Amazon.com over the name “Appstore.” Amazon.com’s virtual goods application store is called Amazon.com: Appstore for Android. Below is the video interview: