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Salesforce renames Heron Tower amid major European expansion

Cloud firm expands British headquarters as it plans to open UK data centre and add 500 European jobs in next year.

By Jimmy Nicholls

Cloud firm Salesforce today announced plans for a major expansion into Europe, taking the anchor tenancy of Heron Tower in London, opening its first UK data centre and adding 500 jobs across Europe during the next year.

Heron Tower will be renamed as Salesforce Tower London as the company takes on more office space for its British headquarters, while in Slough the new data centre will be opened this August, built for the firm by NTT Europe and its subsidiary gyron.

Steve Garnett, EMEA chair of the firm, said: "It’s a major statement about how important the UK is to Salesforce.com."

The news comes after the company reported Q1 2014 revenue of $1.23bn, up 37% compared to the same time last year. The firm projects total revenue of $5bn for this fiscal year.

Salesforce now claims to be the leading provider of customer relationship management (CRM) software in Britain.

Robin Balen, managing director data centre developer Gyron which is building the Slough based data centre on behalf of the SAAS giant said it would be fully powered by renewable energy.

Garnett said the primary clients for the new centre would be related to government, but added that those with "firm reasons" for storing their data in the UK would also be given the option.

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Companies are expected to face stringent EU data regulations within the next year, including obligations to report breaches and become more transparent to customers, which may force them to consider more carefully where their data is stored.

The challenge is particularly acute for companies operating globally, which according to Kendall Collins, executive vice president of mobile and product design at Salesforce, is most of his firm’s customers.

The firm also announced the release of their mobile app, in a move that mirrors SAP’s plans to bring their enterprise suite to smartphones and tablets in partnership with Microsoft.

A survey conducted by the company also revealed 60% of employees in British firms were using apps as part of their jobs, with a similar number disappointed at the speed their employers were introducing apps.

Rounding off a busy news day for the firm, it was also announced that Accenture’s delivery tools for developers would be available on the Salesforce platform, designed to improve standardisation and speed up product releases.

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